Graphic Warning Labels Coming To Cigarette Packs

WASHINGTON (CBS) — Starting in the fall of 2012, smokers reaching for a pack of cigarettes will get an in-your-face warning about what they’re doing to themselves and the people around them.

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s Bernie Tafoya reports, the federal government has unveiled nine new, graphic warning labels that will be put on packs of cigarettes.

One shows a smoker holding a lit cigarette and smoke coming out of a hole in his neck from a tracheotomy, with the warning, “Cigarettes Are Addictive.”

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Bernie Tafoya reports

Other images warn that cigarette smoke can harm children, cause fatal lung disease, cause cancer, cause strokes and heart disease, harm babies during pregnancy, cause fatal lung disease in nonsmokers, and simply “kill you.” The images on the labels include diseased lungs and mouths, a woman in tears, a deceased man with stitches running up the middle of his chest, and a Roy Lichtenstein-esque image of a crying premature baby.

See All The Images

The only optimistic image depicts a man wearing an “I Quit” T-shirt, and repeats a warning that has been placed on cigarette packs and ads by the U.S. Surgeon General for decades – “Quitting smoking now greatly reduces serious risks to your health.

“Ultimately, we hope that all of the graphic warning labels result in fewer kids starting to smoke, and more adults and current smokers wanting to quit,” said Erika Sward of the American Lung Association.

One smoker said the labels might have an impact for her.

“They might have an impact on me, you know, actually, maybe trying to follow through with my, ‘Oh, I’m going to quit next week,’ I might actually be like, ‘You know what? I’m going to try to actually make this my last pack,’” she said.

The labels will also include a phone number to get help to quit smoking – (800) QUIT-NOW.

  • James

    Has there ever been an attempt to completely eliminate a major industry in this free enterprise system? Other than prohibition? The tobacco companies are fighting a losing battle.

  • D

    I hope the anti-American, anti-smoking Nazi regime all sleep well in the smoke of hell. Who told these idiots they could be so offensive and self-righteous?

    • James

      I agree with you 100%, and I’m a non-smoker.

  • Steve

    I smoked for ten years, and recently quit. Going on 4 months, not a single puff, going strong. I am so glad I quit when I did. I would be more than embarrassed carrying around a pack of cigarettes with the upcoming imagery. I do believe this will help curb smoking almost instantly. Its all cognitive. The average human will not stop something they can’t immediately see the negative reaction to.

    I smoked for 10 years, and I have nothing wrong with me, on the outside. However, the inside, where I cannot see, is way far off worse then what I should or could be. But I couldn’t see that damage.

    I know that more and more people are quitting, soon after tv shows and commercials banned cigarette use. Its intervention like this we need, and more of it.

    This is a huge step.

  • HPS

    This is NOT a HUGE step it’s a JOKE.. NO ONE will quit because of a picture.. they do have such things as CIGARETTES BOXES .. you take the cigarettes out of the pack and put into box.. NO PICTURE.. I know the HYSTERICAL left thinks this will stop people (however.. these are the same people that smoke pot by the pack).. but the government has been fear mongering so much NO ONE is LISTENING.. again HIGHER TAXES .. restrictions .. have yielded NOTHING..except again people cutting back in other area’s ..There are people who beleive that using CHEMICALS instead of SUGAR is somehow making them healthier.. and there are those that beleive that not smoking a cigarette but smoking pot is doing the same.. I do however love watching the SHEEP.. and when they decide that it’s the CHEMICALS or the POT (those munchies are a bear) making people sick and fat.. well that’s what you get for being a sheep.. Now had they decided to regulate the CHEMICALS IN CIGARETTES THAT WOULD HAVE MADE SENSE.. but who said the government ever made sense

  • Karen Victorov

    Why stop at cigarettes? Put pictures of obese people on packages of chips and
    cookeis and candy. Show mangled people in car wrecks on beer cans.. There is
    no end to graphic cures for humanity. Hey, but if it works….what would the
    grocery stores put on their shelves? How much tax can you put on a bunch
    of carrots?

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