TULSA - Oklahoma has jumped from 47th in the country to 38th in the percentage of adult smokers in the last year, and for the first time in decades, adults who've never smoked outnumber those who have according to new figures released by the Oklahoma State Department of Health.
The percentage of smokers dropped from 26.1 percent in 2011 to 23.3 percent in 2012, which OSDH calls "a new historic low rate for Oklahoma."
The agency calls smoking the leading preventable cause of death in Oklahoma, "killing more Oklahomans than alcohol, auto accidents, AIDS, suicides, murders, and illegal drugs combined."
The percentage of adults who have never smoked increased from 49.2 percent in 2011 to 52.4 percent in 2012, the first time in decades that "never smokers" have been the majority in the state.
The Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline received some 34,000 calls from Oklahomans interested in quitting tobacco last year.
Those interested in quitting can call the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) or register online at www.okhelpline.com.