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updated: 1/23/2014 5:07 PM

Lawmaker proposes ban on smoking in cars with kids

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Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD -- An Illinois lawmaker has introduced legislation that would make it illegal to smoke in a car while a child is present.

Chicago Democratic Sen. Ira Silverstein is sponsoring the measure, saying it's aimed at protecting children from secondhand smoke.

"Secondhand smoke has serious health effects, and Illinois already restricts smoking indoors. This protects children from prolonged, enclosed exposure to smoke in an even less-ventilated setting," Silverstein said in a statement.

Anyone who violates the measure would face a $100 fine, but police wouldn't be able to pull over drivers simply for a smoking violation. The measure would apply to any motorist smoking in a vehicle with a person under age 18.

The Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises Newspapers reports six states other states have a similar ban.

Last year, lawmakers passed a resolution that discouraged people from driving and smoking with children in the car, but the measure didn't ban the practice.

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