The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are now investigating 14 states for cases of people who have lung-related illnesses possibly linked to vaping.
WAAY 31 spoke with Madison County Schools officials about how this new information could possibly change the way they talk about the drug.
Right now, it's unclear if Alabama is one of those 14 states the CDC is investigating. Madison County Schools said whether Alabama is on the list or not, it definitely sparks a new conversation within the district.
"The major concern that we have with these types of electronic cigarettes is that we don't know exactly what's in any of them," said Keith Traywick, the head of student services for Madison County Schools.
This year, they've already tightened the rules for vaping on school property, but knowing the CDC is possibly linking illnesses to vaping makes them worry and they will continue to talk to students about vaping.
"You know, you don't have to do this. You can be cool in other ways," said Traywick.
He said their nurses are all trained to determine whether or not a student is vaping, and there's a zero tolerance policy if a student is caught vaping. Now, they are looking into latest research and will adjust if needed.
We spoke with one college student who thought vaping was less harmful than cigarettes.
"Cigarettes...That gives you lung cancer too though. That needs to be cut off for real. But vapes, I feel like you could hit that every now and again, just not back to back to back," said Leshedrick Willis, an Alabama A&M student.
After Leshedrick Willis read the many articles on what's being investigated, he said his views are much different now.
"Just stop altogether. Cigarettes, vape, everything," he said.
Madison County Schools officials said they'll be paying close attention for any major updates from the CDC. We've reached out to the CDC to see if Alabama is on the list of states they're investigating and we're waiting to hear back.
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