New state law bans kids from using tanning beds

New state law bans kids from using tanning beds »Play Video
YAKIMA, Wash. -- No more indoor tanning for kids here in Washington. A new state law bans minors from using tanning beds. Salons could be fined if they break it. KIMA learned what kind of impact businesses expect locally.

Julie Cook comes to Planet Sun Tanning in Yakima everyday. She's says the ban on tanning for kids goes too far.

"I think that it should be the parent and the child's decision, between the two of them."

Lawmakers disagree. They barred anyone younger than 18 from ultraviolet tanning devices without a doctor's prescription.

A tanning salon owner that violates the new law could face a fine of up to $250.

"It just interferes with small businesses in Washington State," says Planet Sun owner, Angie Beaudry.

She says minors provide a quarter of her business.

"With the reduction in my revenue, we're going to have to find alternate ways to make up for that lost money."

That's why she installed a spray tan machine. Something kids can use. Angie thinks the tanning bed ban will send more kids outdoors, which has its own risks.

"When you're outside, it's an uncontrolled atmosphere. And, when you're inside, we do limit the exposure time."

Dr. Tanny Davenport warns about any exposure. Sun and radiation can do damage any time at any age.

"The earlier you get exposure when you're a youngster, that sort of starts the clock from when you're more at risk for skin cancers."

He agrees with the law's intent. But, says requiring teenager to get a prescription when they can tan outdoors seems strange.

"I've never written a prescription for a minor for a tanning salon."

Angie hasn't seen any prescriptions yet. But, she now has to check IDs before letting people use her tanning beds.

Washington is the ninth state to ban minors from using tanning beds.