WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — After a ban from the Food and Drug Administration Thursday, retailers and makers of some flavored e-cigarette cartridges have 30 days to stop selling them. The plan comes after skyrocketing addiction rates in teenagers.
While many flavors are going away, the ban does not apply to menthol or tobacco flavors.
Many across the nation and here at home have widely differing opinions, but one local vape shop says teen safety is a top priority.
In an effort to keep teens from getting ahold of e-cigarettes, the government placed a ban nationwide on a certain brand.
This will also hopefully weed out those that are sold on the black market and one local business agrees keeping it out of reach of teens is good as well as being educated on vape pens.
“They come into a vape shop,” US Vape manager Jeremy Petty said. “You have to buy the juice, you have to buy the pod, you have to buy the device, and buy all three if you want it actually to work. One, it gives you an education, so now we can educate you on the products you buy. A gas station don’t have time for that.”
A lack of that education is what can cause harm as well as it getting into the hands of teens.
“It’s become the fastest-growing addiction we have seen in the last 40 or 50 years because teenagers are able to gain access, and it seems that the flavored ones are geared towards teens,” pediatrician Jerry Johnson said.
That’s why Petty said being educated on what vapes people are purchasing can be life-saving.
“When you walk into a vape store and you’re buying a system from the juice to the hardware that juice that I’m pulling off the shelf that I’m giving you comes from another company that has it lab tested that know every ingredient to the last drop. That’s how it works.”
Petty said the only part of the ban he is against is the section that bans the military personnel who are not 21 yet who vape not able to have a choice to keep vaping, but his biggest concern are shops that are in it for just the money and not looking out for the wellbeing of the customer.
According to the CDC as of this month, 55 people have died from vaping-related illnesses and more than 2,500 have been hospitalized.