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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.

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"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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