On July 2016, a new law was passed in Virginia that says, it is illegal for any man or woman to be in their vehicle with a child under the age of eight years old while they are smoking. The states that anyone who would be caught carrying and holding a lighted cigarette, pipe, or any sort of lighted equipment must pay a $100 fine.
This obviously also goes to anyone who is caught inhaling, exhaling, or lighting the said smoking equipments. Although not a primary reason for an officer to pull someone over, it is a secondary offense. According to a professor on Criminal Justice at Radford University, Tod Burke, there are already smoking areas in a lot of public places, so there is no excuse for smoking in a vehicle with a child on it. However, an incident recently happened in Virginia involving a child in a car with an adult caught smoking, continue reading to find out more.
Kids are at higher risk of lung cancer from secondhand smoking
$100 Smoking Fine
A Twitter post by the Virginia Beach Police Department went viral when they posted a photo of a ticket that says they fined someone who is actually inside a car with a minor while they were smoking. This is obviously against the law that was passed in 2016, however, a mixed reaction from the people was shown on the overflowing comments it has received on the post. Some are actually saying that this law can be too much since ever since it has been passed a lot of drivers had been busted.
There was even a comment that said the car is a private vehicle therefor anyone can do what they want in it so it is unacceptable to get pulled over and be fined because of it. However, most people agreed that there should really be a law like this anywhere for the sake of the children and that those parents who are against this law are not fit to be parents at all.
Based on the Code of Virginia, people who are in a car, whether it is in motion or at the rear, is not allowed to smoke if they have a child under the age of eight in the car with them. If violated, the person must pay $100. This is what most people are concerned about since it is not exactly clear whether vaping actually counts.
— VBPD Traffic Safety (@VBPDTraffic) May 8, 2018
Secondhand Smoking On Children
What most people don’t realize is that even if they don’t smoke, if they are usually in the same room with people who smoke, then they could be on a much greater health risk. This is one of the reasons why the state of Virginia has to pass a law that would prevent adults from smoking around a child inside their vehicle.
According to recent statistics, more than 3,000 people actually die from lung cancer from secondhand smoking. This is no surprise since children are unfortunately breathing in secondhand smoke even if they are at home, so what more if they go out. Children’s lungs are way more sensitive because it is still developing, it’s basically fragile and will be in way more danger than most adults realize.
When people smoke around children, they basically breathe in 4,000 chemicals and most of them cause cancer. Based on the research of American Academy Pediatrics, mothers who smoke while pregnant are most likely to have a miscarriage, give birth prematurely or give birth to a baby that has defects or is very sick. However, the smoking adults who have babies and children’s around the house may notice that the children are likely to get sick a lot even if it’s just coughs and cold. In worse cases, they get bronchitis or pneumonia that could lead to death.
Some adults choose to get rid of their smoking habits for their families, but they turn to marijuana instead of cigarettes. Based on a recent study, more and more parents are actually smoking marijuana since they think it’s better compared to cigarettes and is less harmful to the children. What they don’t actually know is that children who had been exposed to secondhand smoking in cigarettes may also be exposed to secondhand smoking to marijuana, which means that being exposed to both could lead to worse health problems.