Town of New Hartford bans smoking at playgrounds

By WKTV News

NEW HARTFORD, N.Y (WKTV) - The town of New Hartford has begun a ban on smoking at their playground facilities in three of their four town parks, Thursday.     

The ban comes after complaints of smokers lighting up, and then discarding their cigarettes in the middle of playground equipment, began a couple of years ago.

Cigarette butts thrown in the wood chips on the ground not only lead to concerns of heath for the children at play, but also made cleaning up the areas very difficult.

Town officials expressed their concern with the issue, and explained why the ban was put in effect.

"You have a lot of small children some even ages 2-5, some of the playgrounds are (ages) 5-12 and there can be 30-40 kids running around," said Michael Jeffery, Director of Parks and Recreation for the Town of New Hartford. "So a couple of adults smoking under the equipment is not something we desire."

The ban isn't park-wide, as smokers are still free to smoke as long as it is not in the immediate vicinity of the playground.

Signs have begun to be put up indicating the new ban.

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