Put Out Your Butt: Smoke-Free Al Fresco Dining Is Here

Think again before lighting up in cafes, near food trucks, or on outdoor patios: Your nicotine fix can cost you up to $500.

Can't fathom drinking your coffee without a cigarette?

If you're almost anywhere but home, too bad.

The LA smoking ban proposed over a year ago has now begun.

Smoking on outdoor restaurant patios, or in cafes, food courts, food carts, or within 40 feet of mobile food trucks can now result in $250-$500 fines.

With so few smokers in Brentwood, will the new rule even affect locals?

“You have to have a room for smokers,” said Chris Jackson, 50, while dining on the outdoor patio of . “I'm not worried about second-hand smoke ... Another rule? Who wants rules every day?” His dining companion begged to differ: "The ban is good. Smoking is not healthful," Dave Collins added.

According to Ordinance 181065, eateries are required to prohibit patrons from smoking within 10 feet of outdoor dining areas, as well as post signs that use the “NO SMOKING” phrase or international no-smoking symbol.

“I'm pro choice. However, I would prefer no smoking out on the patio. Brentwood is such a clean little city,” said Brentwood resident Salome Iravani, 27. “If people want to be self destructive it's up to them. I prefer no smoking on the patio because some people like to sit outside and enjoy the day. It changes the taste of the food and is bad for restaurants.”

With parks, beaches, and farmers markets already smoke free, “The City of Los Angeles continues to set the pace for healthy living,” said Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

"This new smoke-free outdoor dining law will protect patrons and workers from the dangerous health effects of breathing in secondhand smoke, and provide nonsmokers and those who are trying to quit with a smoke-free dining experience," wrote Fresh Air Dining LA, a campaign featuring colorful outdoor transit ads placed throughout the city with the slogan "eating out is better with a side of fresh air.”

As far as hookah smoking goes, "it doesn't effect us," said an employee of Habibi Cafe in Westwood. Just no cigarettes. Nicorette gum should be fine, though we're not sure how that pairs with strawberry flavored hookah.


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