Corvallis bans some smoking: 'They're smoking, and it blows 10 feet away'

CORVALLIS, Ore. -- Starting next month Corvallis will crack down on smoking in public places. The city council voted Monday night to expand a city smoking ban to include city hall, the downtown bus depot and all bus shelters and bicycle parking areas.

Public Works Director Mary Steckel said the move was intended to put out the issues around smoking that have been smoldering around the town for some time.

"The reason that we took this step is because we were getting complaints from folks waiting for the buses at the transit mall about people who were sitting in the area, being exposed to second hand smoke," said Steckel.

According to Steckel the main bus station will see the most change, as smoking will be prohibited within 10 feet of station grounds.

People like Oregon State University student Lizzy Mehringer said they support the ban, but are worried ten feet isn't far enough.

"Especially if you know the bus stop is down wind from the area where people are standing it pretty much clears the area in front of where they're smoking, and it blows 10 feet away," Mehringer said.

"I always thought put a red zone in and paint it at 10 feet," agreed Corvallis Resident Dale Comes. "And if you're smoking inside that red zone you get ticketed."

Many of the smokers - who didn't want to be named - said they are disappointed, but have no choice but to accept the changes.

The city said it will put up posters all around the bus depot to inform riders about the changes that are coming, and when they will impose the new rules.