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Teen becomes first vaping-related death recorded in Montana

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PHOTO COURTESY OF UNSPLASH.COM

ASSOCIATED PRESS

HELENA — Montana health officials say a teenager has died of a lung disease associated with a national outbreak of vaping-related illnesses.

Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services officials said Tuesday that the teenager died of severe pulmonary disease, and is the state’s first recorded death connected to e-cigarette use.

Officials declined to release any identifying information, including the name, age, sex or location of the person, citing confidentiality.

Department spokesman Jon Ebelt did not immediately return a call for comment and clarify when the person died.

Officials said in a statement they have identified two other people in the state with vaping-associated lung illnesses.

Federal health officials reported about 1,300 vaping-related illnesses and at least 26 deaths nationwide as of last week.

A temporary ban on flavored vaping products goes into effect in Montana on Oct. 22.

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