The amount of second-hand smoke created when someone puffs on a cigarette in a car - even with the windows rolled down - is equivalent to being in a smoky bar and poses a serious health risk to children, New Zealand researchers say.
When the car windows are rolled up, the pollution is twice as bad as being in the smokiest bar, the Associated Press reported of the study's findings.
Researchers measured the amount of particulate released when a person smoked in the car. Particulate refers to tiny airborne particles that can get into the lungs. Air pollution studies have linked particulates to health problems.
Particulate levels were 199 micrograms per cubic yard when the windows were rolled down and 2,926 micrograms per cubic yard when the windows were rolled up. Researcher Richard Edwards noted that on a very smoggy day in a New Zealand city, particulate levels are between 35-40 micrograms per cubic yard, the AP reported.
The findings were published Friday as a letter in the New Zealand Medical Journal.
Edwards and his colleagues said smoking in a car poses a serious threat to children's health. They called for the New Zealand government to ban smoking in vehicles where children are passengers. – (HealthDayNews)
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