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Originally published Tuesday, June 11, 2013 at 8:39 PM

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Oregon bans smoking in cars with kids

If you’re driving with children in the car, you can’t smoke, says a new Oregon law. If you do, you could face a $250 fine.

The Associated Press

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SALEM, Ore. — Oregon drivers caught smoking in cars with kids may face hefty fines under a new state law.

Gov. John Kitzhaber signed into law on Tuesday a bill that prohibits drivers from lighting up if a person under 18 is also in the car.

The bill was the subject of a fiery debate in the Legislature.

Supporters said secondhand smoke is a health hazard and children shouldn’t be harmed by their parents’ bad decision to smoke.

Critics said the state shouldn’t regulate what drivers do in their own cars.

A police officer could enforce the ban only if the driver had been pulled over for a separate traffic violation. A maximum fine for the first offense would be $250.

The law also covers marijuana and regulated narcotics.

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