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New Law Bans Minors From Using Tanning Beds

According to the Pennsylvania Academy of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, melanoma is the most common form of cancer in young adults ages 25 to 29, and the second most common type of cancer in those 15 to 29.

Going forward, a minor looking for a tan in Pennsylvania will have to fake it, or earn it the old-fashioned way, by laying out in the sun. 

That's because a new law in Pennsylvania regulates the use of indoor tanning beds by minors -- they can't use them at all.

The law prohibits children aged 16 and under from using indoor tanning beds, and, in a so-called prom-exemption, require that 17-year-olds have a parent's permission.

“We don’t permit minors to smoke or drink in Pennsylvania, and with research indicating ultraviolet exposure can be equally dangerous, it’s time we join the company of the 40 other states that presently regulate indoor tanning, protecting children from its carcinogenic effects,” said sponsor Rep. Frank Farry (R-Bucks) said.

According to the Pennsylvania Academy of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, melanoma is the most common form of cancer in young adults ages 25 to 29, and the second most common type of cancer in those 15 to 29. 

Tanning beds are most frequently used by girls and women ages 14 to 29, Farry's office said.

“Cancer is a diagnosis that no one wants to hear, but more and more young adults are putting themselves at great risk for developing the deadliest type of skin cancer, and all for superficial benefits,” Farry said. “We are concerned many teens and their parents do not fully understand the deadly consequences that can come with indoor tanning.”

The World Health Organization classifies radiation emitted from tanning beds as a class I carcinogen, the highest level of carcinogen in the same category as tobacco and asbestos, Farry's office said.

The legislation also requires that all tanning facilities register with the state; pay an annual fee; undergo regular inspections; and post a notice to customers stating that tanning is carcinogenic.

The legislation was signed into law by Gov. Tom Corbett on May 6.

Should the commonwealth control who can and cannot use tanning beds? Tell is in the comments below!

Barry Gellman May 13, 2014 at 10:02 AM
hey how a bout we do away with Tobacco he number one cause of death before you screw up life for motorcycle enthusiasts .
Lauren Cary May 13, 2014 at 07:00 PM
My grandfather lost his battle to Metastatic Melanoma in 2010. He was my inspiration to start a Campaign this year for my 10th grade graduation project: My goal was to raise awareness and inform student athletes and coaches about the dangers of Melanoma and UV radiation by providing the spring sports with donations of Sunscreen. (I would've done all sports-but the project was assigned in the winter-and early spring and I could only get through to the spring sports). I provided 5 bags full of sunscreen to each spring sport, handed out brochures and flyers, and hats & t-shirts to the coaches. I also had a trifold poster-board in a display case at school and a (8'x3') banner titled Sporting Sun Safety (the logo I came up with) and under it titled Athletes Against Melanoma hung up on a fence near the football field. My project has been a huge success and the coaches have been influencing some of the athletes to use the sunscreen. I hope that even if one teen reduces their Melanoma risk because of my project, it will have been worth every effort.
oceanic64 May 15, 2014 at 12:42 PM
Lets keep them in a bubble so no kids can go outside any more. Life is dangerous it ends in death. Do you smell that? It's the smell of 1930's Berlin wafting thru the halls of congress
Barbara Scherer May 15, 2014 at 03:26 PM
Don't get ridiculous Oceanic64. Kids can go outside as long as they are wearing protective sunscreen and hats!
oceanic64 May 15, 2014 at 09:33 PM
How far does all this go Barb? I think this law is more ridiculous than what I said. Strange days indeed

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