EUGENE, Ore. -- Vape store owners say they've seen a rush of customers coming in as the temporary ban on the sale of flavored vaping products goes into effect at the stroke of midnight Tuesday.
Eric Pinnell, owner of Oregon Vape Society in Springfield, said the influx began after the State of Oregon announced the temporary ban. He said nearly all of the vape juices he sells will be banned, and he has discounted many products.
The ban is expected to last six months. Pinnell said he will keep his store open during the ban.
"Just going to modify our hours. I'm going to work a second if not a third job, do whatever I have to to pay rent, pay my bills and make sure my business is able to stay afloat for the next six months," Pinnell said.
According to the Oregon Health Authority, the ban covers all tobacco and cannabis -- marijuana and hemp -- vaping products that contain natural or artificial flavors.
Tobacco‐flavored tobacco or nicotine products, as well as marijuana‐flavored marijuana or THC products that use only marijuana‐derived flavorings including terpenes are not included in the ban.
Oregon Health Authority spokesman Jonathan Modie said they will enforce the ban by partnering with county public health offices to do inspections. He said they will also work with Oregon State Police to do "secret shopper" operations, where people go into stores to see if they can buy them.
Modie said retailers found to be violating the temporary rules will first receive a warning letter and continued violations could result in civil penalties of up to $500 per day per violation.
Chris Clugstons bought some flavored vape juice at Urban Vapors in Eugene. He said he is willing to go out of state to get more or may go back to smoking cigarettes.
"Cigarettes definitely cause a lot of harm and they're hard on my lungs," Clugston said. "I would much rather vape than smoke cigarettes."
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