The days of smoking in cars while in the presence of minors are about to end in Florida. Starting March 3, congress is looking to vote on a bill that will ban smoking while driving in the car with minors.
If a person is driving with minors 13 years old or younger in the car, they will no longer be able to smoke.
Lisa Stevens is a concerned mother who hopes the bill passes.
“I hope the bill passes because I believe it’s unfair to force a child to have to inhale that toxic smoke,” Stevens said.
The lawmakers are looking to pass the ban on the smoking while driving bill, and charge all violators. Offenders of this bill will receive a non-moving violation citation.
Other states such as California, Maine and Oregon have already passed the bill last year. Florida officials knew it would not be long before the bill was presented in Florida legislation. The bill was created as a way to ensure the safety of minors traveling in cars.
Second-hand smoke can be very hazardous and the bill was created to help prevent as much harm to minors as possible. Officials feel smoking in the car with minors can be harmful because drivers can get easily distracted by cigarette lighters, potentially leading to unsafe driving conditions.
“This state wants to be smoke free, eventually," said Sen. John Thrasher in an interview with the Huff Post Miami. "This is just one incremental step toward getting there.”
Not all citizens are thrilled with the bill being potentially passed about smoking in the car and think that their opinions should be heard as well.
David Johnson is a factory worker who believes it is his right to smoke in his own car.
“I just feel like it’s my right to be able to enjoy a cigarette in my own car,” Johnson said.
Whether the bill gets passed in March, will be up to lawmakers, but it is a push in the right direction to help keep kids safe in Florida.