TAMPA, Fla. — Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody announced a major plan on Wednesday to combat the growing problem of youth vaping.
Moody said she's launching an expansive investigation into more than 20 vaping companies who sell products in Florida.
"We will focus on whether these companies intentionally targeted minors, whether their claims regarding health effects are based in reality, and whether or not they are using an effective online age verification process," Moody said at H.B. Plant High School in Tampa.
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According to the latest numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there have been 1,300 confirmed vaping-related illnesses and 26 deaths in the U.S.
Florida has had 52 cases of vaping illnesses, according to the Florida Department of Health.
"This is a much needed, crucial step in ending this epidemic," said Moody.
Doctors said symptoms include:
- Severe shortness of breath
- Chest pain
Most of the patients who got sick said they vaped products containing THC, the marijuana ingredient that causes a high.
Until a cause of the illnesses and deaths is pinpointed, the CDC is advising Americans to refrain from using any vaping products.
WPTV and the Associated Press contributed to this report.