Smoking in Casinos Causes Toxic Legacy

Smoking in Casinos Causes Toxic LegacySmoking may be banned in most casinos across the US, but these venues are still coated in massive amounts of toxic residue left behind from the time when it was permitted, according to a new study conducted by San Diego State University (SDSU).
In scientific terms, this residue is referred to as ‘thirdhand smoke’ and can apparently be found in abundance on these establishments’ walls, furniture, curtains and carpets. While potentially not enough to cause any real harm to customers and employees, concerns exist that they could become carcinogenic if mixed with other chemical elements in the air.
Commenting upon the discovery, Georg Matt, SDSU psychologist and the study’s lead author, concluded that people visiting casinos even six months after a smoking ban had been enacted would inevitably encounter more thirdhand smoke than other places where smoking may have taken place, such as a smoker’s home. This is due to the high concentrations of smoke build up inside casinos, and elaborating further on its implications, Matt explained that nonsmokers were are at risk of being exposed to higher levels of thirdhand smoke in a casino than other thirdhand smoke-polluted areas.
Ultimately, the study concludes that smoking should never be permitted indoors, and that the longer the practice has been allowed to continue then the more difficult and costly it subsequently becomes to clean up that environment.
“Tobacco should never be smoked indoors unless you are prepared to pay the price for extensive clean up,” explained
Matt. “The sooner you stop smoking indoors, the sooner you will benefit from clean air and the less it will cost to clean up the toxic legacy.”
Another important point addressed in the study concerns the use of ventilation systems in casinos to air its indoor environment. Nevertheless, these systems do little to reduce the build up of toxic residue caused by thirdhand smoke, which according to the study could only be accomplished by intensive surface cleaning, or even surface replacement.
Currently, there are 14 US states without any statewide ban on smoking at workplaces, bars and restaurants, with the list including Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming. Instead, proprietors are required to allocate smoking and non-smoking areas, as well as posting warning signs.

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