Time to go smoke free

PUBLISHED: 13:02 28 June 2007 | UPDATED: 22:54 28 May 2010

IT’S A DRAG: Sylvie’, a customer at the Wheatsheaf pub, Wisbech, enjoys a final smoke with her morning coffee.

Picture: BRIAN PURDY

IT’S A DRAG: Sylvie’, a customer at the Wheatsheaf pub, Wisbech, enjoys a final smoke with her morning coffee. Picture: BRIAN PURDY

Story by ADAM LAZZARI FROM Sunday virtually all enclosed public places and workplaces in England will become smoke-free. The new law will protect people in workplaces, public vehicles and work vehicles, from the harmful effects of second-hand smoke. As w

Story by ADAM LAZZARI

FROM Sunday virtually all enclosed public places and workplaces in England will become smoke-free.

The new law will protect people in workplaces, public vehicles and work vehicles, from the harmful effects of second-hand smoke.

As well as pubs, restaurants, cafes, enclosed workplaces, public vehicles and work vehicles, any part of a person's home that is used as a place of work by a person who does not live there will also have to be smoke-free.

Smoking will also be banned from sports stadiums that are substantially enclosed.

Under the Health Act 2006 it will be an offence: for anyone to smoke in a smoke-free area; for designated premises to not display a smoke-free sign and for someone responsible for a smoke-free area to allow someone to smoke there.

Smoke-free environment adviser for Fenland District Council, Jodie Crane, said: "The law will be enforced in a non-confrontational, educational, and supportive way. "Eventually there will be inspections of premises but we are not looking to catch people out."

A5 no-smoking signs will need to be displayed in a prominent position at every entrance to smoke-free premises. Signs must be a minimum of A5 in area, display the international no-smoking symbol, and carry the following words in characters that can be easily read: 'No smoking. It is against the law to smoke in these premises'.

Anyone caught smoking in smoke-free premises may be forced to pay a fixed penalty fine of £50, which will be discounted to £30 if paid within 15 days. If this goes to court, the fine can go up to £200.

Failure to display no-smoking signs in smoke-free areas will be punished by a fixed penalty notice of £200, discounted to £150 if paid within 15 days, or a court fine up to £1,000.

Failing to prevent smoking in smoke-free premises or vehicle can result in a fine by a court up to £2,500.

There are very limited exemptions from the new law, as set out in the Smoke-free (Exemptions and Vehicles) Regulations. These include exemptions for bedrooms in hotels, and for care homes, hospices and prisons. In most cases, exemptions do not apply to the entirety of premises, but to "designated rooms", that must meet requirements specified in the regulations.

* For further details about the new law, contact Ms Crane on 01354 622460 or visit www.smokefreeengland.co.uk


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