Underage Tobacco Sales Below National Average

 UPDATED 10:33 PM HST Nov 29, 2011

The Hawaii State Department of Health Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division released survey results Wednesday for illegal tobacco sales to minors.

It shows this year?s 6.1 percent rate in Hawaii falls below the 9.3 percent federal fiscal year 2010 national weighted average.

The annual survey is a joint effort between the State Department of Health and the University of Hawaii to determine the extent of illegal sales of tobacco products to minors.

In 1996, the state?s first survey results showed a noncompliance rate of 44.5 percent.

After the implementation of law enforcement operations, this rate steadily dropped and was maintained below 10 percent with the exception of 2008.

Over the past three years Hawai?i has been able to reduce and maintain a lower rate.

With stronger enforcement of tobacco laws being implemented, the aim is to eliminate teenage tobacco use.

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