Although many restaurants and bars have worked in the past to solve the problem of second hand smoke in their business, one local doctor said the only solution is a total ban on smoking in Bowling Green, Ky., businesses.
"That's the only way, we can stop second hand smoke effects on people, that's the only thing that works. There's nothing else that works, and the good news is, it really does work. It can completely eliminate second hand smoke exposure," local doctor Rick Voakes said.
Bowling Green High School Junior, Katie Goodwin said its really frustrating to go out and have to be exposed to smoke from others lighting up.
"We like to go to restaurants, we like to eat out with our friends and within those restaurants there's second hand smoke everywhere and its causing an epidemic in Bowling Green and its causing thousands and thousands to die every year," Goodwin said.
Second hand smoke isn't just a problem in Bowling Green businesses, but also on the Hill. Although Western Kentucky University has worked to alleviate the problem of second hand smoking on campus, one Western student said more can be done.
"As a non-smoker its hard for me, because i don't like being around smoke, i don't like the smell of smoke and then coming out of a building I have to always take a deep breath before i open the door or just look away, or just make sure I don't breathe in second hand smoke," WKU Student Kathy Boka said.
City commissioners have different opinions on a smoking ban. While some think a ban is inevitable, at least one thinks its a violation of the rights of people and local businesses.
"The city commission has indicated that they want to represent the majority of Bowling Green citizens and the vast majority of Bowling Green citizens have indicated in poles and several poles that 60 percent to 80 percent of us support an ordinance," Voakes said.
The American Cancer Society said in the United States, nearly one in five deaths is tobacco related. Each year second hand smoke may be responsible for the death of 3,000 adults with lung cancer that do not smoke.