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Keep cars and homes Smokefree

Media Statement

Date: 17 January 2014

Keep cars and homes Smokefree

Individuals and organisations in the Northland are being urged to support a smokefree cars and homes campaign.

More than 350 New Zealanders die each year due to of exposure to second-hand smoke, said Bridget Rowse, Smokefree Advisor at Northland District Health Board.

“2013 Census data shows 19.1% of people in Northland aged 15 years and over smoke regularly and according to the ASH Year 10 survey 2012, 31.2% of Northland’s 14 and 15 year olds have travelled in a car in the past 7 days with someone who was smoking,” she said.

“Reducing exposure to second hand smoke in cars and homes is one way we can really make a difference to preventing smoke-related illnesses and deaths. Children are particularly vulnerable to second-hand smoke due to their smaller lungs and lower body weight and often do not have the choice to move away from smoke,” Bridget said.

Second-hand smoke was the leading environmental cause of death in this country. There was no safe level of exposure to second-hand smoke and those who were exposed may suffer from many of the same diseases as regular smokers, such as coronary heart disease, lung cancer, acute stroke, eye and nasal irritation and nasal sinus cancer.

“Children need to be protected from second-hand smoke as much as possible as it can cause middle ear infections, lower respiratory illnesses and sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI also known as SIDS or cot death)”, Bridget advised.

The campaign has been developed by the Health Promotion Agency (HPA) and is a refresh of earlier work. Radio advertising began in December and television advertisements will air from 19 January 2014 to 3 February 2014.

Useful tips on keeping your car and home Smokefree are available at www.smokefree.org.nz/second-hand-smoke

For help to quit smoking call 0800 778 778 to speak to a Quit Advisor or visit www.quit.org.nz

ENDS

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