Dagupan police begins campaign vs. vaping

DAGUPAN CITY — The Dagupan City police is working to ensure adequate manpower and coordination with vape shops in the implementation of President Rodrigo Duterte’s mandate against the use of vape in public places.

In an interview Wednesday, Lt. Col. Abubakar Mangelen Jr., city police chief, said they have been coordinating with Public Order and Safety Office (POSO) chief, Robert Christopher Erfe-Mejia, and the Anti-Hawking Group to ensure enough manpower to secure the local government unit’s compliance with the President’s order.

“We will begin the arrest of people who defy the President’s order. We will comply and we will arrest people vaping in public places. But so far, we have not recorded any violators yet,” he said.

He said violators caught vaping in public places will only be invited to come over to the police station, jot down a blotter report, and set free.

“There will be no penalties yet to be imposed against vapers,” he added.

The Dagupan City police has already conducted dialogue with owners of vape shops in the city to determine their do’s and don’ts.

“We talked to them, specifically not to sell vapes to minors,” Mangelen said.

President Duterte issued the directive following the first reported case of an illness related to vaping in the country.

On November 15, the Department of Health confirmed that a 16-year-old girl from Central Visayas who used e-cigarettes for six months suffered from e-cigarette or vape-associated lung Injury (EVALI).

The girl, who allegedly complained of sudden-onset of severe shortness of breath, met the case criteria of EVALI upon evaluation based on the guidelines of the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Ahikam Pasion / PNA – northboundasia.com