Smoking bans in the home and car: Do those who really need them have them?

Prev Med. 1999 Dec;29(6 Pt 1):581-9. doi: 10.1006/pmed.1999.0574.


Background: This paper addresses the question of whether individuals who are most in need of household and car smoking bans, such as individuals with children living at home or who have many friends who smoke, are the ones who have them.

Method: A representative sample of 6985 California adults ages 18 and older participated in telephone interviews.

Results: Overall, 76% of adults report having home smoking bans and 66% have car smoking bans. Being a smoker or African American, not having children in the home, having more friends who smoke, and lower household income were associated with lower prevalence of both home and car smoking bans (P < 0.01). In multivariate analyses, nonsmokers were 7.9 (95% CI = 3.56, 17.31) times more likely to have a home smoking ban when none of their friends were smokers compared to when most of their friends were smokers. Among smokers, there was an interaction between having children at home and the proportion of friends who smoke. Only 27 to 55% of smokers had home smoking bans unless most of their friends were smokers, then the odds of having a ban were 6.1 (95% CI = 2.76, 13.68) times higher for smokers with children (67% with home bans) than for smokers without children at home (25% with home bans).

Conclusions: Efforts to increase home and car smoking bans for nonsmokers who have friends who smoke and smokers with children living at home are needed.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Automobiles*
  • California
  • Child
  • Family Characteristics*
  • Health Behavior*
  • Health Planning
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Middle Aged
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / prevention & control*


  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution