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Santa Monica's Next Possible Smoking Ban: The Pier

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Photo by sfxeric via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr

Photo by sfxeric via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr
Santa Monica city leaders should really just ban smoking throughout the whole city. Is the process of of slowly hacking away at bits and pieces of the city -- the latest was to ban smoking 25 feet within an apartment or condo building window or door -- really that efficient?

Now the City Council will determine if smoking should be banned on the Santa Monica Pier. And there appears to be good reason for this. To quote a staff report, via the Lookout News: "Improperly extinguished cigarettes are reported to be the leading cause of fire on the pier."

As it is now, there are nine designated smoking areas on the pier, per a 2004 city ordinance. But cigarette-induced fires, albeit trending downward over the past six years, did cause two small blazes this year. On April 30th, one left 30 square feet damaged and a May 11th one left 50 square feet damaged. The pier should be all that flammable because the wood boards are treated, but if a cigarette falls between or under, dust and debris can catch fire.

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Currently, smoking bans in Santa Monica can be found in city beaches, parks, outdoor dining areas, farmers markets, outdoor waiting areas (think ATMs, movie lines and bus stops, says the newspaper) and the Third Street Promenade.