Pa. Law That Bans Those Under 17 From Tanning Beds Now in Effect

A new law attempting at curbing over-tanning, which was passed earlier this year, went into effect on Monday.

On Monday, the Indoor Tanning Regulation Act went into effect in Pennsylvania. The law, passed earlier this year, bans tanning for those under 16 years of age and requires a parent’s permission for tanning of 17-year-olds. The law also requires tanning bed owners to register with the state.

“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,” GOP Rep Frank Farry, of Bucks County, said in a statement when the law was passed. “We are concerned many teens and their parents do not fully understand the deadly consequences that can come with it.” Forty other states regulate indoor tanning.

According to a FAQ posted by the state (PDF), the law includes many provisions attempted at curbing over-tanning. They include:

  • Warning signs must be posted at tanning locations.
  • Protective eyewear must be provided at facilities free of charge.
  • Customer records — with time, date and duration of tanning — must be kept by each facility for at least three years.

The law does not effect spray tanning, or devices in private residences. If you have a tanning bed in your house, you’re exempt!

“The department recognizes that we are trying to reach a broad audience as the law applies to not only retail tanning shops,” Secretary of Health Michael Wolf said, “but also many gyms, beauty salons, apartment buildings and other locations that may offer tanning for a fee.”

Inspections will begin in May of 2016.