Passengers at Dulles International Airport are getting a dose of second hand smoke, according to a new Centers for Disease Control report.
In America's five busiest airports that still allow smoking in designated areas, air pollution directly outside those smoking zones is five times higher than in airports that are completely smoke free, the report shows.
Dulles has smoking lounges in the B, C and D terminals. Nearly 23.1 million passengers flew into and out of Dulles in 2011, making it the nation's 22nd busiest airport, according to the FAA. Both Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport prohibit smoking in all indoor areas.
The CDC says secondhand smoke causes heart disease and lung cancer in non-smoking adults and is a known cause of sudden infant death syndrome or SIDS, respiratory problems, ear infections and asthma attacks in infants and children. Even brief exposure can trigger acute cardiac events such as heart attack.
In addition to Dulles, the study tested air quality in Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta, McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, Denver International Airport and Salt Lake City International Airport were included in the CDC study.