State Representative Henry Genga of Connecticut has proposed a state law that would ban smoking in all vehicles containing children in car seats.
The proposed law is designed to protect children from secondhand smoke, which is thought to increase a child's chance of having ear infections, allergies, asthma, wheezing, pneumonia, and frequent upper respiratory tract infections. Secondhand smoke can also trigger asthma attacks and increase an infant's risk of SIDS.
Smoking while driving can also be a source of distraction for the driver and is another good reason to ban smoking while kids are in the car.
Although often derided by some as being overprotective, like when states try to enact laws to keep kids from riding in the back of pickup trucks (it is still legal in at least 20 states), these types of laws are a great way to raise awareness and keep kids safe and healthy.
If the law passes in Connecticut, they will join four other states that already ban smoking in cars when children are present, including Arkansas, California, Louisiana, and Maine. And although not banned state-wide, kids can enjoy riding in smoke-free cars in certain parts of Hawaii, Indiana, Maine, New Jersey, and New York.
Do you have friends or family members who smoke when their kids are in the car? Do you? The proposal of the this new law in Connecticut is a great time to discuss the benefits of quitting and that kids are healthier in a smoke-free car.