CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — As the Hamilton County School Board looks to crackdown on vaping on high school campuses, the students themselves are looking to help.
Hixson High School student Abigail Sharp says after watching her family members suffer from health issues because of vaping, she wants to make sure others don't follow the same path.
"I know I want to finish high school and be happy with how I ended it -- and not end up in the hospital," Sharp said. "People's lives are ending, and they are hooked up to ventilators and stuff because of vaping,"
Sharp is one of seven Hixson High School students in the group called Teens Against Vaping.
They say they use social media and in-person presentations to educate kids their own age on just how dangerous vaping can be.
"It's affecting people we go to school with daily," Hixson High student Gabrielle Miller said.
What started as "project-based learning," introduced by Hamilton County Schools, has turned into a student campaign.
The number of serious injuries and even deaths linked to vaping has been on the rise, as Tennessee reported its first death this week.
Also increasing -- the number of kids using these devices in high schools.
"They tend to still associate this vaping oil as being a healthier version to cigarettes and it's not," said Mandy Shell, who advises the group.
The school board says vaping is already banned on campuses, but members are still searching for a way to better enforce these rules. A possibility is harsher punishments and even pushing for new state laws that deal directly with students.
Other schools in our area are participating in similar activities. Red Bank High School will have a vaping education event on Oct. 30.