LOCAL NEWS

Vaping: A growing epidemic with very little regulation

Oct 9, 2019, 7:44 AM | Updated: Oct 16, 2019, 12:51 pm

The Washington State Board of Health is expected to act Wednesday on Governor Inslee’s executive order to ban flavored vaping products.

“Look, when you addict a 12 year old kid to nicotine, you’re just wrong,” Inslee said.

Like many in the industry, Zach McLain who operates Future Vapor in Seattle insists he only sells e-cigarette products to adults, many of whom are trying to stop smoking.

Pierce County Army vet battles vaping illness as outbreak continues

“And we’ve got to remember, 1,300 Americans die every day from smoking. That’s going to happen today, that’s going to happen tomorrow. It’s going to happen for the rest of the year.”

There’s limited proof vaping helps smokers quit, however, and the Food and Drug Administration has not approved it as a smoking cessation tool.

And although the FDA says it does have the right to regulate e-cigarettes, little has been done, according to King County Health Department Doctor Jeff Duchin.

“They haven’t really exercised any meaningful oversight over the manufacture or safety of these products, right now,” Duchin said. “Really, no one knows what they’re getting when they buy one of these products, whether it be a device, or a solution, or a flavoring.”

As for products that list FDA-approved chemicals or additives, he says that only means they’re safe to eat or drink.

“When you put them in one of these devices they become heated up and they form new chemicals, and we have no clue about how safe they may be.”

While the federal government has been largely hands off, Washington state does regulate the sale and purchase of e-cigarettes.

Starting in January 2020, only adults 21 and over will be able to buy e-cigarettes or traditional tobacco products.

There are slightly tighter state controls on cannabis products which list content, and are tested and tracked.

Chairman and CEO John Gorst says Ionic Brands goes further.

“We have actual scientists that are on staff that are working on these different formulations of our products to ensure that they’re compliant and that they’re as safe as possible,” Gorst said.

Vaping habits can impact teens’ brain development, and it’s easy to hide

But in this relatively young industry there are questions about how safe vaping anything is.

And as the state moves to tighten regulations, people in the industry worry that will simply push customers to the completely unregulated black market and force legitimate vape shops out of business.

“You want someone that believes in these products. You want someone that has their heart in it and has never been interested in selling these products to children,” McLain said.

Local News

Climate Pledge Arena...
Associated Press

Climate Pledge Arena ready to get Kraken for hockey debut

The first event ever inside Climate Pledge Arena — whether it will be considered the official first event or not — was far from a soft opening.
19 hours ago
shipping containers...
KIRO 7 News Staff

Approximately 40 shipping containers adrift off Washington coast

Approximately 40 shipping containers were lost off a ship 43 miles west of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, according to the United States Coast Guard.
19 hours ago
refugees...
Kathryn Altena

Gov. Inslee, Washington groups prepare to welcome Afghan refugees

In the coming months, 1,400 Afghan refugees are expected to pass through the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport upon their arrival in Washington.
19 hours ago
King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski...
Nick Bowman

King County Councilmember accused of history of ‘verbally abusive’ behavior toward female staff

King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski is facing accusations detailing a history of verbally abusive behavior toward female staff members.
19 hours ago
Microsoft campus, vaccine...
KIRO 7 News Staff

Racial harassment allegations at Microsoft campus construction site in Redmond

Racial harassment on the job — that’s what a Black construction employee says he was dealing with for months at the build site on Microsoft’s campus in Redmond.
19 hours ago
Jaime Herrera Beutler...
Nick Bowman

Washington Rep. Herrera Beutler breaks from GOP party line again over Bannon contempt vote

Washington Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler was among nine Republicans who voted in favor of holding Steve Bannon in contempt on Thursday.
19 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Medicare open enrollment for 2022 starts Oct. 15 and SHIBA can help!

Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner SPONSORED — Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, also called the Annual Election Period, is Oct. 15 to Dec. 7. During this time, people enrolled in Medicare can: Switch from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage plan and vice versa. Join, drop or switch a Part D prescription drug plan, […]
...

How to Have a Stress-Free Real Estate Experience

The real estate industry has adapted and sellers are taking full advantage of new real estate models. One of which is Every Door Real Estate.
...
IQ Air

How Poor Air Quality Is Affecting Our Future Athletes

You cannot control your child’s breathing environment 100% of the time, but you can make a huge impact.
...
Swedish Health Services

Special Coverage: National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

There are a wide variety of treatment options available for men with prostate cancer. The most technologically advanced treatment option in the Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform.
...
Marysville Police Department

Police Opportunities in a Growing, Supportive Washington Community

Marysville PD is looking for both lateral and entry level officers. Begin or continue your career in law enforcement for a growing, supportive community.
...
Comcast

Small, Minority-Owned Businesses in King County and Pierce County Can Now Apply For $10,000 Relief Grants Through Comcast RISE

Businesses in King County and Pierce County can apply beginning on October 1, 2021, at www.ComcastRISE.com for a chance to receive a $10,000 relief grant.
Vaping: A growing epidemic with very little regulation