When I used to smoke, a long long time ago, every so often I’d find myself jonesing in an airport. I’d look over at the glass-encased smoking cabins with dread. Was it really worth subjecting myself to that, just to have a cigarette? Invariably, the nicotine addict in me defeated all reason and I’d open the door and gag at the incredible stench. But hey, the smokers get to smoke and the non-smokers don’t have to breathe it. That is the reasoning behind one company’s mission to take the smoking cabin beyond the airport and incorporate it into just about every aspect of Bahrain’s civic life (except the kindgergarten).
The Bahrain International Airport has a smoking cabin in the departures lounge, but according to Gulf Daily News, arrivals will get its own too. So will malls, office buildings, banks, restaurants, government ministries, and industrial centers.
Everywhere in Bahrain, smokers will be able to step into their own smokey zone without any kind of legal recourse. This is a great service, given that 1/3 of Bahrain’s population still smokes, which Abdullah Al Derazi Company will provide with a certain amount of pride.
Benefits of the smoking cabin, according to the company’s Managing Director Mansoor Al Derazi, include: increased productivity in businesses places since people no longer have to walk up and down steps or go outside to smoke, increased cleanliness in areas where smokers usually hover and leave behind their cigarette butts, and cabins come with filter systems that suck out the poison and replace it with fresh air.
The company’s business development manager Nihal Grero dismisses criticism that the ubiquitous cabins encourage more smoking; instead, he says, they are doing a lot to protect non-smokers and are actually improving air quality in some cases.
“In coffee shops we can supply a purifier system in the ceiling, some already have exhaust fans but this is a real solution because it takes the smoke out of the air and gives out fresh air,” he added.
Dr. Kadhem al Hawyi from the Bahrain Anti-Smokers Society does not mind the cabins so much, as long as they are placed discreetly.
He told the paper that children who grow up in homes occupied by smokers, have passively inhaled the equivalent of 100 cigarettes by the time they are five years old (I used to do that in five days!); though they can’t be protected from this, at least the smoking cabins should be kept a secret from them.
The cabins, which are built in the Netherlands, come in modular sizes that will fit anywhere from two to twenty of Bahrain’s most committed cigarette and sheesha smokers.
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image via kalleboo