Date: Sun, 30 Nov 1997 19:47:15 -0800
From: Sue Ann Phung
Subject: Web Page response

Dr. Strenski,

I just managed to put up my smoking ban web page today and I received this response from the President of the Anti-smoking ban group. Can you believe it?

Sue Ann Phung

Date: Sun, 30 Nov 1997 20:46:44 -0500
From: Walt Hanley
To: "''"
Subject: Please update your link

About your page "Second Hand Smoking Homepage". You failed to grasp the concept that mitigation of Radon, and Tobacco smoke are identical. It requires proper ventilation. With more and more places being required to go smoke free, business have chosen to decrease ventilation, thus increasing risks from Radon exposure. But improper ventilation represents more risks than just Radon exposure. As was with the airline industry, once smoking was banned from commercial aircraft, airlines choose to save money by decreasing fresh air ventilation within the aircraft cabin. This resulted in higher levels of carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide, and other trapped airborne contaminates. "Breathing on a jet plane. How fresh is the air?" Consumer Reports 1994 Aug;59(8):501-506. This is also substantiated in DOT tests in 1989. Also documented in NY Time "Exposures to tuberculosis on planes are investigated." New York Times 1993 Jun 21;142(49,369):A7 D/abstract18358.html Also see Travel & Leisure "What's wrong with Cabin Air".

It should also be noted, radiation exposure from airline travel represents a far greater risk, than exposure to second hand smoke. Yet people willing expose themselves to this danger rather than demanding airline manufacturers, and operators provide proper shielding on aircraft. See above DOT study, and also NY TIMES "Tests of cockpit radiation show levels above a federal standard." New York Times 1990 Mar 1;139(48,161):A12 /abstract12465.html

Secondly I take offense to the statement "Also my opponents claim that there are more people who die from radon (estimated 17,000) in the home than due to lung cancer (estimated 3000) from secondhand smoke ("Misinformation Continues). These are weak arguments. First, who are stating these arguments? They are the tobacco companies themselves who have an interest to keep America smoking." I make these arguments. I, nor my organization have any affiliations with any tobacco companies, and I resent the inference that FORCES is tobacco company sponsored.

Thirdly as you so aptly pointed out, Smoking, Drinking, and second hand smoke presents a group of the largest preventable causes of premature death. Why not just close the bars, since drinking represents a major preventable health hazard. While you are at it, why not close down most of the restaurants since they serve unhealthy food. I believe you neglected improper diet in your top three list of preventable causes. "After smoking, which causes an estimated 500,000 deaths each annually, obesity-related conditions are the second leading cause of death in the U.S., resulting in about 300,000 lives lost each year." Dr, Koop explained. Furthermore, obesity-related diseases cost the U.S. economy more than $100 billion annually. and Yes, this would really create a win-win situation for bar and restaurant owners wouldn't it?

Lastly I was unable to verify your figure of $100 billion dollars, since it was only attributed to comments made by Kessler. But the documented figure used by the CDC is around $50 billion dollars (revised to 56 billion by BERA). This is a total figure, including estimated employer costs.


Walt Hanley
President, FORCES Georgia

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