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NJ Lawmaker Wants To Safeguard Ice Skating Rink Air [AUDIO]

A Garden State lawmaker is pushing a plan to make the air at indoor ice skating arenas safer.

Flickr User LWY

Legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Ralph Caputo would establish a carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide air quality testing and certification program that would be implemented by the Department of Health and Senior Services.

“We’ve gotten a lot of reports, not only in Jersey but around the country” says Caputo, “where young people have been stricken ill by amount of gases in these indoor rinks… there is a concern regarding these facilities that the levels of carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide are maintained at an unacceptable level – some of the equipment is old or in bad shape…this is a measure to protect our youth, or people that participate – whether it’s hockey or junior skating or whatever – to make sure that the health standards are up to par.”

He says older or malfunctioning zambonis – the machines that clean the ice- can spew unacceptable levels of carbon monoxide into the air.

“It’s like starting your car in your garage” says Caputo, “you can’t be breathing these toxins in and thinking it’s not going to have an effect… not every skating rink in New Jersey has this problem, but where they do they have to be monitored and compliant with state law…I think it’s a way of us just being safe in terms of what these fumes could be doing to our kids.”

The measure has been passed by the full Lower House and now heads to the State Senate for consideration.

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