Is the use of electronic cigarettes fireproof

LIP products - cigarettes with reduced ignition potential

What is LIP, what are LIP cigarettes?

The term "LIP" stands for "Lower Ignition Propensity" (also: "RIP" - Reduced Ignition Propensity "). In German one speaks of "cigarettes with reduced ignition potential". LIP cigarettes were developed to reduce the risk of fire from carelessly dropped or unattended smoldering cigarettes.

In the press one often reads wrongly about “fire-safe” or “fire-safe” cigarettes. However, no cigarette is fire-proof or fire-proof, because every burning object is a potential source of fire.

If you put down a conventional cigarette while it is still glowing, it will usually burn down to the end. As a weak heat source, it can ignite the material on which it lies and thus start a fire.
The ignition potential of a LIP product can be reduced by changing the cigarette paper.
The technology most frequently used by cigarette manufacturers is the reinforcement of the cigarette paper in two to three places by means of ring-shaped thresholds (so-called "bands" or "speed bumps"). If the embers reach such a band, the oxygen supply is reduced at this point and the combustion process slowed down. The cigarette can then go out by itself.

When did LIP come onto the European market?

Since November 2011, a European standard has determined how cigarettes are tested for fire safety. The standardized test procedure and the safety requirements of the CEN (Comité Européen de Normalization) are regulated in the technical standards EN 16156: 2010 and EN ISO: 12863 and integrated into the national standards in the individual member states. The EU standard is based on the US standard ASTM E2187 “Standard method for measuring the ignition strength of cigarettes” from the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM).

How is the extinguishing property of a cigarette determined?

In the fire safety test, one cigarette is lit and placed on a stack of filter paper. Conventional cigarettes usually burn down completely, while LIP cigarettes are supposed to go out beforehand.

According to the decision of the European Commission, LIP cigarettes meet the safety standard if at least 75 percent of the cigarettes in a test group do not burn down completely, but rather go out beforehand. So far, however, it is unclear whether the introduction of LIP cigarettes can achieve a significant reduction in the number of fires caused by cigarettes.

Since when and where have LIP cigarettes been available?

  • As early as 1984, experimental work on Lower Ignition Propensity (LIP) cigarettes was carried out in the USA in cooperation with the National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST) and the tobacco industry.
  • In July 2000, Philip Morris launched the first LIP cigarette in the USA with his “Merit” brand.
  • In 2002 a standard test method was published under the auspices of the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM): ASTM E 2187 “Standard method for measuring the ignition strength of cigarettes”.
  • After several attempts in American states, a law was passed in New York in 2000, according to which only cigarettes were allowed that meet the fire protection standard of the adapted ASTM. In June 2004 the law came into force.
  • As of January 1, 2011, similar legal provisions came into force in all states of the USA.
  • In Canada, too, since October 2005, only cigarettes that meet the requirements of the ASTM test method (ASTM E2187-04) have been allowed to be sold.
  • Australia followed this example in March 2010 and developed a standard test method for this, the "Australian Standard Determination of the extinction propensity of cigarettes" (AS 4830-2007 based on ASTM E2187-04), which was published in March 2007.