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Smoke Free In Sanatoga, And Across PA

Fewer places to puff.

Fewer places to puff.

Pennsylvania’s ban against tobacco smoking in most public places, including restaurants and work environments, took effect yesterday (Sept. 11, 2008). Offenders face fines of between $250 and $1,000 if convicted of breaking the law.

The state Department of Health estimates that about 2 million adult Pennsylvanians, or 16 percent of the state’s population, are smokers. Extrapolated, that also means about 1,200 Sanatogans could have their smoking habits affected – for better or worse, depending on your point of view – by the ban.

State Health Secretary Dr. Calvin Johnson proclaimed the law’s implementation “a historic moment.” For a small group of smokers who work at Pottstown Memorial Medical Center, however, it was just another day. The hospital has long been smoke-free. During breaks they smoke outside, standing around a 5-gallon plastic bucket that sits at the bottom of a hill and the end of a driveway which empties onto Porter Road, just below the hospital’s helipad.

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