Michigan schools install vape smoke detectors in restrooms

Posted at 10:24 PM, Nov 25, 2019

(WXYZ) — Schools across the country and in Michigan are doing their part to make sure potentially dangerous vaping products are kept out of the hands of students. There is now technology being installed inside schools to detect vape smoke.

Vape detectors are being installed in bathrooms, one of the most common places for vaping. The detector sense vape smoke in the air and sends a mobile alert to school administration. The alert gives them a location, so school officials can go to the location and confiscate the products.

One of the makers of these products is Soter Technologies. The New York-based company says their “Fly-Sense” detector is in 25 school districts within the state of Michigan.

“The hardware and the electronics, all of that works, we couple that with a series of training classes to help the schools create a hashtag no vaping campaign and have the schools become vape-free,” said CEO of Soter Technologies Derek Peterson.

While some districts are clearly on board, others are holding off.

Superintendent of Novi Schools, Dr. Steve Matthews, says their focus is on educating students about the dangers of vaping. Dr. Matthews tells 7 Action News that with over 5,000 square feet and 20 bathrooms scattered throughout the high school, he feels vaping detectors would be too much.

“It seems like we would have our administrators and hall monitors running around the building all day long trying to catch a ghost, if you will,” said Dr. Matthews.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services confirms the following school districts in our state have installed vape detectors:

Bay County Schools
Charlotte schools
Grand Blanc HS
East Grand Rapids schools
Midland HS
Forest Park Schools (Iron County)
Fennville Public Schools
Plainwell Schools