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Depositphotos_14568615_s-2015Some of you may be too young to remember that there was once a time when cigarette smoking was permitted on airplanes. By today’s standards, smoking on a plane is an unheard of and crazy-to-even-think-about practice. Not only does cigarette smoke present the foulest of odours, but it carries countless toxins that pollute the air. As if horrible indoor air quality wasn’t bad enough, cigarette smoking also presents quite the fire hazard!

In 2015, we don’t even have to think about worrying about poor indoor air quality on planes due to cigarette smoke. In fact, in the past year, Canada and the United States marked the 25th anniversaries of the official bans on cigarette smoking on domestic airline flights. As No-Smoke.org informs, February 25, 1990 marked the official beginning of the cigarette smoking ban on airlines in the U.S. The site notes that the historic decision was made to benefit the health of all flight attendants and passengers.

It goes on to reveal just how much effort was put into finally making the ban a reality. According to No-Smoke.org, “2015 marks the 25 year anniversary of this important public health achievement – made possible by a broad coalition of health groups, incredible legislative champions – Senator Lautenberg and Senator Durbin (then Rep. Durbin), and tenacious flight attendants who were willing to speak up publicly for their right to breathe.”

In Canada, however, we can proudly say that we came to the no-smoking-on-planes decision a couple of months earlier. On December 18, 1989, Peter Mansbridge of CBC News revealed that, as of that date, it was illegal to smoke on commercial flights between Canadian cities. The ban was part of the Non-Smokers’ Health Act, he reported. “It has to be done in light of the fact we want to protect people working on the flights and also all those people who are really disturbed by smoking,” said Minister of Transport, Benoît Bouchard in an interview.

“This is fantastic news for preventive medicine,” added Ken Kyle of the Canadian Cancer Society, “Canada will now be the first country in the world to totally ban smoking on all domestic and international flights.” Incredibly, many Canadian airlines were upset at the news, citing upwards of $40 million in losses due to the smoking ban. Times have changed, however. Today, we should all celebrate the fact that, when flying, we will not be forced to succumb to the worst possible indoor air quality.

And why should we all celebrate? Stacy Simon of the American Cancer Society adds that years prior to these decisions, the US Surgeon General officially named secondhand smoke a serious health risk. In 1986, “the National Academy of Sciences called for a smoking ban on all domestic flights, citing research that showed flight attendants were exposed to smoke levels similar to those of a person living with a pack-a-day smoker,” she reveals.

Not that this information isn’t widely known in the year 2015, but back in the 1980’s, it appeared that the dangers of cigarette smoking weren’t all that obvious to everyone. Not that it needs to be reiterated today – or perhaps, it does – but cigarette smoking is arguably the worst thing a person can do for his or her health. But even worse, secondhand smoke can present lethal effects to those around the smoker!

It should go without saying that you should adopt a smoking ban in your own home. 25 years ago, airlines finally recognized the dangers that cigarette smoke brings to passengers and flight attendants. In 2015, there is no excuse to allow for it to enter your home and disrupt the breathing of anyone who enters it. At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we greatly promote top-of-the-line indoor air quality and applaud any efforts to make it so.

Contact us to learn more about our Air Quality Services. Call 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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