Second-hand smoke may harm health outdoors

THE smoking ban is causing outdoor second-hand smoke exposure in some areas to more than double, according to a new study.

Experts say that outdoor smoking areas could be creating a new health hazard.

The new study, by researchers at Georgia University in the US, assessed the levels of a nicotine by-product, cotinine, in non-smokers exposed to second-hand smoke outdoors.

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They found levels were 162 per cent greater than in those who were not exposed.

Amanda Sandford, from the anti-smoking charity Action on Smoking and Health (Ash), said:

"Although more research needs to be done to verify the findings of this initial study, it shows that further restrictions on smoking outdoors, such as smoke-free cordons around doorways, may be necessary to protect employees who are required to work in places where people are smoking."