CARSON CITY, Nev. (KOLO) - A simple glance down Carson Street and you can't miss the “Going Out of Business” signs at Nevada Vapor Supply.
Owner Nina McIntosh says she saw the signs the industry was in trouble two months ago.
“The deaths started happening and the associating with just vaping,” says McIntosh. “Vaping is a verb now. You can't just say vape. It applies to a lot of things,” she says.
McIntosh says she cut her prices for tanks, coils, batteries, and liquid flavor. The prices have all fallen, much like her businesses for the last several months.
“I have people come in, "am I going to die from this?" No,” says McIntosh.
As of October 31st, the Centers for Disease Control says 37 people have died from lung injuries caused by vaping or e-cigarettes.
A vast majority of patients report using a THC-containing product. That’s the psycho-active ingredient in marijuana. 16% reported using nicotine products only.
No one knows what's causing the lung disease. But they do know, the THC-containing products are typically obtained on the black market—not in vaping stores like Nevada Vapor Supply.
To add insult to injury, McIntosh is bracing herself for further restrictions concerning e-cigarettes and vaping. Specifically this week she says the Trump Administration and the FDA could ban all flavored products with the exception of tobacco flavor.
Delivery systems could be banned as well.
The irony McIntosh says to all of this: Those trying to quit smoking by vaping will most likely go back to cigarettes. And she says consumers will be forced to use black market products—the same products the CDC is attributing to the majority of lung injury deaths nationwide.
Copyright KOLO-TV 2019