Wood County leaders aim to keep schools drug free amid vaping dangers

PARKERSBURG, W. Va. (WTAP) - School officials in Wood County are working to keep their schools drug free amid vaping dangers that have caused life-threatening incidents at other West Virginia schools.

U.S. Attorney Bill Powell issued a warning Tuesday regarding the dangers of vaping products amongst high school and middle school students.

On October 31, two Morgantown High School students were hospitalized after overdosing on heroin-laced vape pens labeled 'TKO'. Additional overdoses from University High School in Morgantown from the same type of vape pen.

While police identified a fellow high school student as the distributor of the doctored vape pens, and were able to seize other devices being filled with the suspected vaping solution, investigators believe the items are still in circulation.

School leaders in Wood County say with vaping on the rise, the device is a threat everywhere and they're taking action to keep their schools free from all drugs.

Cathy Grewe, Coordinator for Assessment and Student Services at Wood Co. Schools, says they have various anti-drug and drug education programs in place, as well as consequences for students who are caught using drugs on school grounds.

Parents are also educated on the dangers of vaping. Grewe says they were given an in depth pamphlet at the beginning of the school year on what the devices are, what chemicals and solution they contain, and how they can negatively affect users.

Wood County schools have seen a decrease this year in the number of students who vape for the first time, since last year.