On Air Now

Listen Now

Weather

heavy-rain-night
57°
Overcast
H 75° L 56°
  • heavy-rain-night
    57°
    Current Conditions
    Overcast. H 75° L 56°
  • clear-day
    67°
    Afternoon
    Sunny. H 75° L 56°
  • clear-night
    71°
    Evening
    Clear. H 75° L 56°
Listen
Pause
Error

News on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Listen
Pause
Error

Traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Listen
Pause
Error

Weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Breaking News
Georgia announces second vaping-linked death in state
Close

Georgia announces second vaping-linked death in state

Vaping and health risks – What you need to know

Georgia announces second vaping-linked death in state

The Georgia Department of Public Health has announced the state’s second death from a vaping-linked illness.

No details on the latest death were provided early Wednesday, as the number of people hospitalized continues to climb.

The first person who died in Georgia, announced two weeks ago, was an unidentified man over the age of 35. The agency did not say where he lived, only that he did not live in metro Atlanta.

He had a history of heavy nicotine vaping but no history of vaping THC, which has been linked to a majority of the mysterious vaping-related lung diseases afflicting e-cigarette users.

AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

In this photo made on Friday, Oct. 4, 2019, a woman uses her vaping device in Harmony, Pa. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Close

Gov. Kemp issues health advisory after 2nd vaping-related death in Georgia

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

In this photo made on Friday, Oct. 4, 2019, a woman uses her vaping device in Harmony, Pa. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

The death is one of at least 14 confirmed cases in Georgia. Most patients were hospitalized and developed pneumonia with “no known infectious cause,” according to the agency. They also required respiratory support.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is working with states to investigate more than 1,000 cases of vaping-associated illness. There have been at 18 deaths confirmed in 15 states.

The CDC said most patients who have come down with the vaping illness reported using products containing THC, the main psychoactive chemical in marijuana. About 70% of those sickened are men and most are young; 80% are under 35 years old, according to the CDC. About 16% of the patients are under 18, and 21% of the patients are between the ages of 18 and 20.

No specific e-cigarette device or substance has been linked to all of the cases. E-cigarettes are battery-powered devices that heat liquid, turning it into vapor for inhaling. They are an increasingly popular alternative to combustible cigarettes.

Doctors are reporting cases of otherwise healthy patients, many in their late teens and 20s, showing up in emergency rooms gasping for breath and vomiting. The CDC said the outbreak does not seem to be caused by an infection but by chemical exposure, possibly a solvent mixed with nicotine or THC. Investigators are increasingly focused on thickeners and additives found in illegal THC cartridges sold on the black market.

But with the cause of illness still unknown, the CDC is urging people to consider refraining from using e-cigarettes. People who decide to continue vaping should not buy vaping products off the street, and they should not modify or add any substances to the products.

Symptoms of vaping-associated illnesses, which worsen over time, include cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, chest pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

The rash of cases has heightened scrutiny of e-cigarettes, even though many health experts consider them less harmful than traditional cigarettes, which release toxins through combustion.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Students and parents arrive for a educational presentation about vaping and the law at Lakeside High School in Atlanta in September. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com
Close

Georgia announces second vaping-linked death in state

Photo Credit: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Students and parents arrive for a educational presentation about vaping and the law at Lakeside High School in Atlanta in September. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

Experts who study tobacco policy fear this public health crisis tied to vaping may have unintended consequences, including driving people who vape back to cigarette smoking, which remains the country’s leading preventable cause of death.

Dr. Michael Eriksen, dean of Georgia State University’s School of Public Health, said the epidemic of youth vaping, potential bans on flavors, and the lung disease outbreak have created a perfect storm of confusion around e-cigarettes and their potential to help smokers quit the deadliest of habits.

“This is undermining what we know about vaping and we lose sight of smokers and what this is all about,” he said. “It is not helpful what is going on and it has confused everyone.”

He said it’s important the public realize risky, “illicit marijuana use” is most likely to blame for the outbreak.

Eriksen said public officials and government agencies should take a systematic approach to both e-cigarettes and traditional cigarettes. For example, if policies ban flavors for vaping products, they should also prohibit flavors in traditional tobacco products. If not, ex-smokers could return to smoking deadlier menthol cigarettes or flavored cigars which come in a variety of flavors including chocolate.

Scott Gottlieb, who stepped down as commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration in April, outlined an ambitious anti-smoking plan which included lowering nicotine in traditional cigarettes two years ago. But the agency has yet to unveil its proposal for cutting nicotine.

RELATED: Marlboro cigarette giant to test ‘heat not burn’ tobacco in Atlanta

MORE: CBD FAQs: What is CBD? Is it legal? Does it actually help?

Read More

News

  • Last year, after mounting pressure to address the impact of screen time on young users, Apple released a new feature that tracks how long users look at their phone each day. (Although, many teens have found loopholes to circumvent the monitoring system sometimes used by parents). >> Read more trending news  But, of course, it’s not just young people who are spending oodles of hours in front of a screen. Nearly 30% of adults in the United States say they are online “almost constantly,” according to a Pew Research Center poll. And another Pew study reported screen time was increasing among adults over 60. The potential drawbacks of too much screen time are well-documented: Studies have linked it to depressive symptoms for adolescents and overall sleep disruption. In addition, too much exposure to blue light — the wavelengths emitted from phones and computer screens — may also be causing accelerated aging, even if you’re not looking directly at it, a new study suggests.  The study, published Thursday in “Aging and Mechanisms of Disease,” found that blue light could be damaging to cells in the brain, as well as the eyes. The researchers looked at how fruit flies responded to 12 hours of exposure to blue LED light. In the study, the flies that were exposed to 12 hours of light, followed by 12 hours of darkness did not live as long as those kept away from the blue light all together. Exposure to blue light also affected the flies’ ability to conduct common behaviors, such as climbing walls. Some flies used in the experiment were eyeless and even those subjects had brain damage after being exposed to the light.  “It was very clear cut that although light without blue slightly shortened their lifespan, just blue light alone shortened their lifespan very dramatically,' researcher Jaga Giebultowicz said. Fruit flies are frequently used in similar studies because of their cellular makeup and development is similar to humans and other animals.  'And with the prevalent use of LED lighting and device displays, humans are subjected to increasing amounts of light in the blue spectrum since commonly used LEDs emit a high fraction of blue light,” Giebultowicz said.  In order to curb risk, the researchers suggest that people get plenty of exposure to natural light, which is important for maintaining the body’s natural circadian rhythm. 'As science looks for ways to help people be healthier as they live longer, designing a healthier spectrum of light might be a possibility, not just in terms of sleeping better but in terms of overall health,” researcher Eileen Chow said. In addition to getting outside for some Vitamin D, researchers also suggest people wear glasses with blue light protection when looking at screens and check the settings on devices to block blue light emissions. 
  • He was able to “Get Out,” and survived the “Black Panther” — and Okoye — so Daniel Kaluuya’s next project might leave some people scratching their heads. >> Read more trending news  Kaluuya is partnering with Mattel Films and Valparaiso Pictures on a live-action movie about Barney, the giant purple dinosaur who famously loved us from 1992 through 2009. “Barney was a ubiquitous figure in many of our childhoods, then he disappeared into the shadows, left misunderstood,” Kaluuya said Friday in a statement announcing the movie. “We’re excited to explore this compelling modern-day hero and see if his message of ‘I love you, you love me’ can stand the test of time.” According to Mattel Films’ Robbie Brenner: “Working with Daniel Kaluuya will enable us to take a completely new approach to ‘Barney’ that will surprise audiences and subvert expectations. The project will speak to the nostalgia of the brand in a way that will resonate with adults, while entertaining today’s kids.” Kaluuya was nominated for an Academy Award for his 2017 performance in “Get Out.” In 2018, he played W’Kabi — friend of T’Challa and the love of Okoye — in Marvel’s Atlanta-filmed “Black Panther.” Social media had mixed reactions to the announcement, so many that Barney was a trending topic by Friday afternoon.
  • The Houston Astros and Washington Nationals will face off in the 2019 World Series, starting with two games at Houston's Minute Maid Park before the teams head to Nationals Park in D.C. Want to follow all the action in the best-of-seven series? Here's what you need to know: >> Read more trending news  When and where are the games? Major League Baseball has released the following dates and start times for the Fall Classic: Game 1: Washington at Houston, 8:08 p.m. EDT Oct. 22 Game 2: Washington at Houston, 8:07 p.m. EDT Oct. 23 Game 3: Houston at Washington, 8:07 p.m. EDT Oct. 25 Game 4: Houston at Washington, 8:07 p.m. EDT Oct. 26 Game 5 (if needed): Houston at Washington, 8:07 p.m. EDT Oct. 27 Game 6 (if needed): Washington at Houston, 8:07 p.m. EDT Oct. 29 Game 7 (if needed): Washington at Houston, 8:08 p.m. EDT Oct. 30 What channel? Fox will televise the series. Fans also can tune in via ESPN Radio. What do I need to know about the teams? The Astros are no stranger to the playoffs, making appearances in four of the last five postseasons and winning the championship in 2017, according to ESPN. 'We're going back, to #TakeItBack!!' the team tweeted early Sunday.  Washington, meanwhile, is hoping to win the World Series for the first time in Expos/Nationals franchise history, despite appearing in five of the last eight postseasons, The Associated Press reported. The city hasn't had a team make it to the series since 1933, when the Washington Senators faced – and lost to – the New York Giants, according to MLB.com. – The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • Bruce Springsteen made a boss move Saturday night, surprising a group of movie goers at an opening screening of his movie “Western Stars.” >> Read more trending news  Springsteen, a native of Freehold, delighted fans Saturday night at the screening at the AMC Loews Freehold Metroplex Cinema, the Asbury Park Press reported. “Thanks for coming out, thanks for supporting me all these years and enjoy ‘Western Stars,’” Springsteen told cheering fans, the Asbury Park Press reported. The film is a series of live concert performances by Springsteen of songs from his album “Western Stars.” The movie is set for wide release Oct. 25. 
  • After widespread backlash and concerns, President Donald Trump on Saturday said he will not be using his Miami golf resort as a host site for the 2020 G-7 Summit. >> Read more trending news  “We will begin the search for another site, including the possibility of Camp David, immediately,” Trump said on social media. “Thank you.” The White House announced Thursday that the meeting would take place at Trump National Doral Miami, a golf resort owned by the president.
  • Ohio city leaders decided to solve a property dispute with a resident by cutting a building in half. >> Read more trending news  The city constructed a storage building for equipment, but part of the structure was on Brett Galloway’s property, WJW reported. Galloway has been working with city leaders since January but discussions ended without a deal. Instead, city leaders decided to cut the building in half and installed a chain-link fence. “It is pretty much the most ridiculous thing ever,” Galloway told WJW. “I don’t know who would think this is a good idea. I can’t use my property and they lost a building.” Officials plan to tear down the portion built on city land. They are unable to demolish the other section because Galloway would not let them on the property, WJW reported.