Objective: To determine the impact of restaurant smoking restrictions on indoor air quality Method: In September 1998 a regulation was enacted which severely restricted smoking in Boston restaurants. Boston Tobacco Control staff selected 4 establishments which permitted smoking in the dining area prior to the regulation. Air samples were taken using a device which measures particulate matter between .2 and 10 micrometers. Air samples were taken in the middle of the dining area for approximately 45 minutes during peak weekday dining time, both before and after the regulation went into effect. Results: The national ambient air quality standard for particulate matter is a daily average of .15 and an annual average of .05 micrometers. Samples taken when smoking was allowed showed results well above these levels. Particulate matter at these times had a baseline above .5 micrometers. There were frequent spikes over 10 micrometers and some spikes close to 100 micrometers. We returned to test the same locations after the regulation went into effect and these dining areas became smoke-free. The resulting samples never exceeded .5 micrometers and were mostly below .2 micrometers. Conclusions: Other factors could account for particulate matter in a restaurant dining area; particularly cooking grease. However, such elements would have been present in both the pre- and post-test. Since the only changed variable was cigarette smoking, we are confident that the elimination of cigarette smoke in Boston dining rooms resulted in enormous reduction in particulate respirable matter in the air.
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of this session, the participant will be able to develop a plan to evaluate the impact of restaurant smoking restrictions on indoor air quality and articulate the positive public health results
Keywords: Tobacco Control,
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: None
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.
The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA