Aug 1, 2016

Measurement of Indoor Particle Levels in a Minnesota Tribal Casino

Zheng Zhou, Raymond G. Boyle

Secondhand smoke exposure for workers and patrons in hospitality venues is a persistent and significant public health concern. With research partners Zheng Zhou (Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University) and Raymond G. Boyle (Clearway Minnesota), we designed this study to provide a comprehensive assessment of secondhand smoke exposure inside an Indian tribal casino in Minnesota.

Our study's results show that indoor concentration of fine particulate matter is substantially higher than the outdoor level, posing health risks to casino workers and patrons. Secondhand smoke can migrate into adjacent non-smoking areas very quickly. The casino’s ventilation system did not fully eliminate secondhand smoke. A completely smoke-free casino would be the only way to fully protect non-smoking patrons and employees from the dangers of tobacco smoke.

This work was supported by a grant from ClearWay Minnesota (RC 2014–0011). The report was originally published by BMC Public Health.