England Introduces Smoke Free Regulations
From 6am on 1st July 2007 virtually all indoor workplaces and public places were declared smoke free by new regulations enacted under the Health Act 2006.
The aim of the legislation is to protect people from the detrimental health effects of second hand tobacco smoke, which is not just a nuisance but can cause premature death.
Firstly smoking is illegal in any premises which are enclosed or substantially enclosed and are used as a workplace by more than one person, or are open to members of the public.
Employers and proprietors are not allowed to provide an indoor smoking room or substantially enclosed smoking area; anyone wishing to smoke will have to do so outside.
Secondly, there are new regulations relating to smokefree signage. No smoking signs in an A5 format must be displayed at every public entrance to a building. Signs using the international 70mm format can be used at staff entrances and when the premises are located within larger smoke Free premises such as a shopping centre.
Thirdly, legislation applies to all public vehicles (including Taxis) and vehicles used for work purposes. Such vehicles are required to display the international no smoking symbol at least 70mm in diameter in a prominent position in each compartment.
There are several offences for failure to comply with the legislation including smoking in a smokefree place, failing to display the appropriate signs and failing to prevent smoking in smokefree premises. These may be dealt with by a fixed penalty notice or a court awarded fine.
Although there are enforcement options, Buckinghamshire Local Authorities have agreed to adopt a largely informal approach to enforcement, in the first instance. It is anticipate the law will be largely self-enforcing as is the experience in places that have already adopted such provisions.
For more information or to order a supply of leaflets or stickers visit:
(opens new window) or Phone Smoke Free England 0800 1691697.
From 1st July 2007 members of the public have been able to call a national smoke free compliance line
0800 587 1667
to raise concerns, which can be forward to the relevant Authority.