News from Falcon Student Media

The Perch

News from Falcon Student Media

The Perch

News from Falcon Student Media

The Perch

Vape detectors installed in school bathrooms

A vape detector, the large rectangular box, is shown fixated to the ceiling of the the library bathroom. (Elsa Gray)

With vaping becoming more and more popularized by teenagers, the school has installed vape detectors this year in all student bathrooms to prevent vaping in school.

“[They’re] sensors as the typical smoke detectors that you’ve had for years, it’s just that it detects multiple chemicals that are common in most of the [vaping devices]. The exact number of chemicals we don’t know, somewhere between 70 and 400,” said Gus Sabogal, director of technology.

The detectors also pick up more than just the chemicals. They also have a noise detector, one that only is alerted if there is a loud noise such as a scream or loud bang. However, they don’t record people talking in the bathroom, just noises that could mean students in danger. The detectors will also sound an alarm if tampered with: If anyone tries to touch, cover, or disable the detector, that will also be reported.

Studies continue to show that vaping, which is illegal for anyone under 21, is detrimental to one’s health. For example, according to the American Lung Association, vaping can cause both lung disease and cardiovascular disease.

“As you can imagine, vaping contains very harmful substances, very often nicotine and other harmful substances that students can get addicted to,” School Counselor Susana Cetta said. “That becomes a huge problem in and of itself and is definitely affecting [users’] physical health but it also affects your mental health. It affects your ability to focus and pay attention and just your overall wellness. So really, we’re looking at helping students identify if they are having problems with addiction, addiction to vapes, or to nicotine in general.”

Cetta said that the counselors are always available to care for students who are trying to beat addiction.

Sabogal said that the vape detectors were implemented as a preventative measure, with hope that their presence will lead to students reducing their nicotine intake.

Elsa Gray

“We understand the pressures that are out there, but we also want to provide students with healthy alternatives for vaping in general,” Cetta said.

These alternatives are as simple as, when one feels a craving, do something active, keep your hands busy like doing a chore, or meditate, according to Truth Initiative.

“The vaping situation is getting out of control, we looked at the numbers and it’s pretty high,” Sabogal said. “We needed to figure out a way to help the community, to be more conscious about the health factor.”

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About the Contributor
Elsa Gray
Elsa Gray, PTTV reporter
Elsa Gray is a junior at Palmer Trinity School. She spends her time at school working for Metamorphosis, the women's empowerment club, and working for Falcon Student Media. She's an active member of the school community, participating in many school activities such as cheerleading. This year, she wishes to really find a journalistic voice and learn more about the students through her work.

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