In 2010, the San Francisco Health Code was amended to place further restrictions on smoking in San Francisco. Smoking is now prohibited in enclosed common areas of residential apartment complexes. An enclosed common area is an area that is accessible to and usable by residents of different units. Such areas include common halls, elevators, covered parking areas, lobbies, waiting areas, interior stairwells and bathrooms, cooking, dining, lounge, laundry facilities, recreation and lobby areas, etc.
It should be noted that the Health Code does not prohibit a person from smoking inside his or her own private residential unit. However, when a person does smoke inside a private unit, any door in the private unit that leads to an area where smoking is prohibited must remain closed, except for purposes of ingress and egress.
Owners and landlords of residential apartment complexes should be aware that they must post specific no-smoking signs at the property. They should also be aware that failing to comply with the Health Code’s smoking laws could result in fines or penalties.
The full text of the above smoking restrictions and amendments can be found in Article 19F of the San Francisco Health Code.