Vaping has been in the news a lot of late, both locally and nationally.  And the news is not good!

Nationwide, at least five people have died from vaping-related illnesses. The Centers for Disease Control has reported about 450 possible cases of severe respiratory diseases that are potentially linked to vaping. Those cases have been reported in 33 states, including one right here in North Dakota. Last week the state Health Department reported its first case of severe respiratory disease connected to vaping.

18 year old Hailey Weigel of Bismarck went from smoking cigarettes to vaping and nearly died because of it.  She hopes her story will help save others.

Health experts say that’s part of the problem with vaping; it’s been marketed as a healthy alternative, and a way to stop smoking.

“Some of the early marketing states these products just produce harmless water vapor. There is nothing further from the truth from that,” said Neil Charvat, Tobacco Prevention and Control program director. “It’s not water, it’s glycerin, oily liquids, flavoring that is safe to ingest but we have no idea what that does when it’s inhaled. That’s the concern.”

“I can say that with 100% confidence. They are not safer,” said Weigel.

Weigel hopes others can learn from her experience. She wants to share her story with as many people as she can. Her mom’s Facebook post about Hailey has been shared more than 2,000 times. And she has already been asked to speak at several schools across the state.

To read the whole story CLICK HERE.