March 8, 2011 - Researchers are calling for Australian-style restrictions on outdoor smoking at bars, cafes and restaurants, after finding high levels of air pollution, and that much of it drifts inside. (Western Australia - even in outdoor, well-ventilated areas, second-hand smoke presented a health risk..)
The smoke tests by Otago University researchers around Wellington found the highest levels of fine-particle pollution w"ere in the partially enclosed outdoor smoking areas of hospitality venues - on average 72 micrograms per cubic metre of air. But the levels were also high - 54 micrograms per cubic metre - inside bars in areas next to to the outdoor smoking areas. Areas further inside bars and restaurants had much lower levels.
Nick Wilson and colleagues write: "This suggests there is smoke drift from secondhand smoke in the outdoor smoking areas to the inside." (environmental tobacco smoke, ets, passive smoking second hand smoke, shs, involuntary smoking, sidestream smoke)
PAPER: A persisting secondhand smoke hazard in urban public places: results from fine particulate (PM2.5) air sampling, Nick Wilson, Richard Edwards, Rhys Parry, Journal of the New Zealand Medical Association, 04-March-2011, Vol 124 No 1330, ABSTRACT..
The authors urge extending statutory smokefree areas to cover half of seated outdoor areas of hospitality venues, as is done in in parts of Canada, the US and Australia. "This could be justified on grounds of protecting workers' health and fairness to non-smokers - allowing some reasonable access to semi-smokefree outdoor seating - and is likely to have high public political acceptability."
The paper adds that banning smoking in cars carrying children - an idea supported by Associate Health Minister Tariana Turia - "is probably the priority new smokefree law required in New Zealand". The concentration of fine-particle pollution from tobacco smoke can be 51 times greater inside a car with the windows closed than the levels measured outside bars. There is near universal support for this policy, even among smokers, although not among policymakers.
This is despite the estimated effects of secondhand smoke on children including 50 deaths a year and thousands of cases of illness, largely from exposure in homes and cars.
This is a FACT: Children's exposure to second-hand smoke is dangerous, especially in cars..
Reference: Smoke testers call for outdoor ban by Martin Johnston, NZHerald.co.nz, 3/7/2011.
New Zealand related news briefs:
New Zealand - New Plymouth central business district - councillors against smoking ban..;
New Zealand - study quitting results when smokers receive nicotine from a source other than cigarettes..;
New Zealand - are roll-your-own cigarettes more addictive than factory-made??;
New Zealand - more on smoking cessation - does it always require a drug(s)??;
New Zealand - massive push to get smokers to quit..;
New Zealand - cigarette display ban passes first reading..;
New Zealand - price goes up number of smokers goes down..;
New Zealand - Māori Affairs Committee Report released - November 2010..;
New Zealand - non-smokers offered incentives to test cigarettes..;
New Zealand - phase out tobacco sales over the next decade..;
New Zealand - Scandinavian Tobacco granted clearance to merge its cigar and pipe tobacco businesses with Swedish Match..;
New Zealand - tobacco industry whistleblower addresses the Maori select committee..;
New Zealand - a third of patients seeking treatment in the ED were smokers..;
New Zealand - the majority of New Zealanders support an end to commercial tobacco sales by 2020 - can it happen??;
New Zealand - study revives interest in keeping tobacco hidden..;
New Zealand - health board says no to psychiatric hospital smoking ban..;
New Zealand - report on illicit trade and options to control growth of illicit trade..;
New Zealand - ASH Year 10 Snapshot Survey - Dramatic youth smoking decline..;
New Zealand - plain cigarette and tobacco packs could turn teenagers off smoking..;
New Zealand - Tobacco companies target women..;
New Zealand - lobby group of small retailers formed to protest tobacco price hike..;
New Zealand - more than half of the people want to end tobacco sales by 2020..;
New Zealand - revenue department has begun a review of BAT financial transactions..;
New Zealand - increase in tobacco excise forced through Parliament by the Government..;
New Zealand - Christchurch prepares for meeting with tobacco select committee..;
New Zealand - biggest drop in smoking rates seen in a decade..;
New Zealand - Maori affairs committee continues to gather information..;
New Zealand - study quit-smoking products that are acceptabe and effective..;
New Zealand - smoking ban results in decrease in heart attacks..;
New Zealand - BAT attends Maori Affairs select committee meeting on tobacco..;
New Zealanders want cigarettes banned by 2020..;
New Zealand - Maori women - almost 50% smoke..;
New Zealand - more and more teenagers turned off by smoking..;
New Zealand - loophole in the law banning tobacco sponsorship..;
New Zealand - University of Auckland to go smokefree - 1st university in country..;
New Zealand - smoking ban in bars results in less smoking at home..;
New Zealand - study, tobacco displays leads to increase in youth smoking..;
New Zealand - graphic warnings cigarette maker selects less offensive images..;
New Zealand - Maori committee to investigate smoking..;
New Zealand - Tairawhiti Board wants tobacco sold only on prescription..;
New Zealand - health researchers calling on government to ban importation of tobacco..;
New Zealand - 1st trial ever of e-cigarettes..;
New Zealand - BAT reducing prices discouraging people from quitting..;
New Zealand - stop smoking campaigns NOT working..;
BAT awarded worst corporation in New Zealand..;
New Zealand - government may NOT support tobacco display bans..;
New Zealand More Evidence Needed to Ban Tobacco and Cigarette Displays..;
More evidence - tobacco displays increase the risk of teens smoking..;
Horror photos go on New Zealand cigarette packs..;
Country to Eliminate Smoking - The South Pacific nation of Niue;
Ireland to ban tobacco displays..;
Smokefree NZ within 10 years..;
By law, oral snuff cannot (but nasal snuff is allowed) be sold in New Zealand and can be imported only for personal use..