Charlotte Hornets to ban smoking at arena next week

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The Charlotte Hornets hope to be smoking hot on the floor, but there will be no more smoking for anyone at Time Warner Cable Arena.

The team announced Monday that under a new Mecklenburg County policy, there will be no more designated smoking areas or smoking on any part of the property, including the sidewalks outside.

The ban starts March 18.

Smoking has not been allowed inside the arena, but there have been smoking areas outside the building. Those go away next week.

No smoking products will be allowed on the property, including cigars, cigarettes, pipes and electronic cigarettes.

People will not be allowed to leave the building to smoke and then re-enter.

Violators will be removed.

Health officials say smoking bans reduce exposure to secondhand smoke.