Utah vape shops sue health department over e-cigarette rule



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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Several Utah vape shops are suing the state's Department of Health over its emergency rule restricting the sale of flavored e-cigarettes.

The retailers claim in a lawsuit filed Monday in Utah state court that there is no evidence to suggest flavored e-cigarettes are causing lung damage and that the new rule could hurt business.

The rule that took effect Monday came in response to a nationwide outbreak of lung damage linked to vaping. Utah health officials have identified 98 cases and one person has died.

Department of Health spokesman Tom Hudachko declined to respond to the lawsuit's claims but said stopping the outbreak is the top priority. He says reducing young people's access to nicotine vaping and THC products is key.

Officials say unregulated vaping products containing marijuana's high-inducing ingredient, THC, are likely driving the outbreak.

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The Associated Press

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