RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. - James Case came to the desert with hopes of opening a restaurant, but nine months ago his bad habit steered him in a new direction.
"I came back from Spain and started smoking again. I decided I needed to quit smoking and a friend of mine was vaping," said Case.
Mixing flavors of blueberry and strawberry, Case created and opened eVapor Station off of Highway 111 in Rancho Mirage. He said it's a relaxing lounge where smokers can learn about vaping and the health risks of smoking.
"I was stuck at about a pack every two or three days. It wasn't a lot but I hated every puff, but I couldn't stop," said customer Danny Digham, of Palm Springs.
Levi Adair, of Palm Springs, said with two children he needed an alternative.
"I'm over the tobacco. I wanted to go a healthier way," he said.
To help kick the habit, eVapor offers reusable devices that give users smaller doses of nicotine found in the station's eJuices. They release water vapor instead of tobacco toxins. Case said he and his employees can manipulate and control the amount of nicotine customers get.
"Eventually you wing yourself off without the harsh drop that some people get," said Case.
Without tobacco, doctors say vaping may be not be as harmful as smoking real cigarettes, but it's also not risk free. Experts warn with enticing flavors, it could also eventually create a path for kids to start smoking.
Case said the main goal at eVapor Station is to educate.
"By doing this I can slowly but surely step away from this," said Adair.
With his kids in mind, he added "They don't see a cigarette or smell it and I don't have to worry about them thinking it's OK because dad did it."
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump took part in the contentious final debate of the presidential election.Read More »
All photos courtesy of the Palm Springs Police Department.Read More »