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April 05, 2019
This media company recently took a trip out to Las Vegas to document an ongoing issue that has plagued Vegas gambling establishments since the beginning - cigarette smoke. When you first enter a casino floor, the senses are overwhelmed with the sounds of slot machines, bright lights, and the odor of cigarette smoke. It is a part of the air and it is hard to escape. When you sit down to play a hand of blackjack, a waitress comes around and asks you what you’d like to drink and if you’d like to buy a pack of smokes. It is just as much a part of the Vegas culture as the show girls, neon signs, and over the top shows.
Second-hand smoke is not just an issue that can be snuffed out or overlooked. Every day thousands of tourists and casino employees are exposed to toxic second-hand smoke. Yet there is a trend going on nationwide that is bringing the smoking numbers down to new lows, and that is E-liquid and electronic cigarettes. How is that affecting casino floors?
A study done by the University of Reno shows that the smoking rate inside casinos and other gambling establishments mirrors the national average of the country. For example, in 2016, the national average number of smokers was 15%, which is down from 2005 when the national average was 20%.
It is not a stretch to say that the rise in popularity of E-cigarettes had an impact on the decline of smoking rates, as it has fast become a popular alternative for people attempting to quit smoking cigarettes.
But what does this mean for the bystanders who neither smoke or vape?
Considering that electronic cigarettes form a relatively new and rapidly growing industry, studies are not as prevalent now as they are for cigarettes. However, according to a study done by BMC Public Health about the effects of second-hand vapor, “the current state of knowledge about chemistry of liquids and aerosols associated with electronic cigarettes indicates that there is no evidence that vaping produces inhalable exposures to contaminants of the aerosol that would warrant health concerns by the standards that are used to ensure the safety of workplaces.”
Although nothing can compare to breathing in clean air, when comparing second-hand cigarette smoke to second-hand vape smoke, there is evidence that second hand vape is cleaner than second-hand combustible cigarette smoke.
Think of the casino employees. Imagine a workspace where they can breathe easy knowing they are not being exposed to harmful second-hand smoke from combustible tobacco cigarettes. For the safety of bystanders, tourists and the employees should be a concern to the bustling Casinos in the city of Las Vegas.