Florida sees a record decrease in smoking teens while vaping escalates

Hillsborough County

TAMPA, Fla (WFLA) – A newly-published Tobacco Free Florida report is showing a dramatic decrease of Florida teens using tobacco products.

According to the report, Smoking rates among high school students dropped from 3.5 to 2.1 percent over the past year.

Since 2007, smoking among teenagers has dropped 86 percent.

Vaping, however, is on the rise and officials are planing to take precautions.

Hillsborough County commissioners voted unanimously, on Wednesday, to pass an ordinance that bans county businesses from selling vaping products to anyone under 21.

One in four teenagers in Florida use an e-cigarette.

In early fall, state Rep. Jackie Toledo (R-Tampa) joined Hillsborough County school board members at Tampa General Hospital on Thursday to discuss a proposal hoping to stop vaping among kids.

President Donald Trump called for a ban on thousands of e-cigarette flavors in September

This year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported multiple deaths and more than 450 possible cases of severe lung injury in 33 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

According to the Bureau of Tobacco Free Florida – which is part of the Department of Health, nearly 25 percent of Florida high school students reported they used vaping devices in 2018. That’s a 58 percent increase compared to 2017.

E-cigarette use

Check out the increase of E-cigarette use among Florida teens between 2016 and 2018. Hover over the bar to see the exact percentage number.

Source: Tobacco Free Florida

A Sarasota family filed a lawsuit this summer against e-cigarette company JUUL Labs Inc., for exploiting adolescents and getting them hooked on the aerosol devices that deliver a more powerful hit of nicotine than cigarettes.

But the family wasn’t the first to file a lawsuit about the e-cigarette company.

A South Florida mother filed a lawsuit in Oct. 2018 because her 15-year-old son was addicted to the product and vaped up to 12 times a day.

Data shows 16.1 percent of adults smoked cigarettes in 2017. Meanwhile, 4.3 percent of adults used e-cigarettes.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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