Walmart said on Friday that it would end sales of e-cigarettes at its locations in the United States, as medical concerns about the effects of vaping rise along with sicknesses and deaths seemingly linked to the habit.“Given the growing federal, state and local regulatory complexity and uncertainty regarding e-cigarettes, we plan to discontinue the sale of electronic nicotine delivery products,” the nation’s largest retailer said in a statement on Friday. The company will continue to sell the devices until its current inventory of e-cigarettes is exhausted.
Walmart’s decision came a day after medical authorities said that the number of vaping-related lung illnesses had risen to 530 probable cases, and a Missouri man became the eighth to die from the mysterious ailments.
Investigations are underway by the Centers for Disease Control, the Food and Drug Administration and state health departments.
On Sunday, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York announced emergency regulations to quickly ban the sale of flavored e-cigarettes, and state health officials approved the ban on Tuesday. Michigan announced this month that it would also prohibit such products.