2015 marks the 25th anniversary of the law that ended smoking on domestic U.S. airline flights. But indoor smoking still occurs inside many U.S. airports, including the world's busiest passenger airport, Atlanta's Hartsfield‐Jackson International, which daily averages 250,000 passengers. "Smoking inside airports exposes millions of passengers to the well‐documented hazard of secondhand smoke," said Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights Executive Director Cynthia Hallett." The diseases and death caused by exposure to tobacco smoke remain as real today as ever."
The U.S. Surgeon General in 2006 concluded there is no risk‐free level of exposure to secondhand smoke, and the only effective protection is to completely eliminate indoor smoking. But still today, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports secondhand smoke exposure annually results in more than 30,000 heart disease deaths and more than 7,000 lung disease deaths in non‐smoking individuals. In increasing numbers of studies reported throughout the world, short‐term exposure to cigarette smoke is associated with heart attacks.
"No ventilation system in an airport, or bar or casino protects travelers or workers and patrons from the health hazards from secondhand smoke exposure," Hallett said. The American Society of Heating Refrigeration and Air‐conditioning Engineers, the standard‐setting body for indoor ventilation, has found that ventilation and other air filtration technologies cannot eliminate health risks from secondhand smoke exposure. Reprinted from: Smokefree-Skies-But-Smoke-Lingering-in-Airports