Do you travel by Car? Do you smoke? Do you ever sit in a car whilst someone else is smoking?
Did you know you could be fined even you don’t light up yourself? Your passenger could cost you a £50 fine.
Although the current change in the law will only apply to England and Wales the Scottish Government is currently considering passing similar legislation. However, if you are likely to be taking a trip south of the border for work or pleasure you need to have an understanding of the new legislation coming into force on the first of October this year.
The details of what the Scottish law on smoking in cars has yet to be released but it is likely to be largely similar.
Smoking cigarettes, cigar or pipe in a car whilst a person under the age of 18 is present could cost you a £50 fine.
If you as a driver or as a passenger is caught smoking in a private vehicle with a person aged 17 or younger is in the same car then you could face a instant penalty ticket fine. If the person smoking is a passenger then the same fine will also be imposed on the driver as well.
The same penalty will apply even if the only person under 18 is also smoking at the same time.
Who Is Fined For Smoking?
I order to explain how smoking fines are to be levied we will look at one situation that could easily arise.
Two 17 year people are travelling in the same car with no one else present. A police car draws alongside them at the traffic lights and spots them both smoking.
The passenger can be fined for smoking in the presence of an under 18 year old person (the driver).
The driver can be fined for allowing a passenger to smoke whilst an under eighteen person (the driver) is present.
The driver can be fined for smoking in the presence of an under eighteen year passenger.
Total fines levied £150.
Smoking is already a very expensive habit. This new legislation coming into effect on First of October could make smoking in a private car a very expensive pastime.
Can I ?
If you are driving along in a motor caravan and smoking whilst in the company of an under 18-year person you can be fined. If you are in the same vehicle but parked up using the motor caravan as accommodation rather than as a transport then you can not be fined.
Don’t think opening the sunroof and windows will help. You can still be regarded as smoking in a private vehicle. However, if you are in a full convertible and the roof is fully open and firmly secured then you are quite safe to smoke. Safe as regards this legislation not necessarily safe on health grounds.
What about having a smoke parked at the side of the road with the engine off and doors all wide open? You can still be fined if any one person in the car is under eighteen.
This new law will initially only be applicable in England and Wales. However both the Scottish and the Northern Ireland governments are considering introducing these restrictions.