Sunday 8 December 2019

Stub out smoking in cars with children and then have a total ban

Ban: smoking in cars
Ban: smoking in cars

Campbell Spray

Passion, competence and commitment are all there in those three Cabinet Ministers Messrs Reilly, Donohue and Varadkar - respectively for Children, Transport and Health - who can make real chnages in the last 18 months or so of this Government.

For a start, they could follow the Welsh government, which last week voted to outlaw smoking in cars when children are present.

Senator John Crown has already proposed this over here and the Government should immediately go with the plan and then follow it up with introducing a total ban on all smoking in cars.

According to an opinon poll in Britain, 89pc of UK smokers want a smoking ban in all cars and vehicles. The survey by a major UK car-leasing organisation believes it will lead not just to better health, but a dramatic increase in road safety.

Hot on the heels of the Welsh government announcing that in-car smoking would be banned in any car carrying children as passengers. says that Westminster should go the whole hog and forbid smoking on the road altogether.

"It's already forbidden in company-owned cars, lorries and vans," said spokesperson Johnny Ratcliffe, "and it's about time that the law was made the same for everybody."

The company believe that their proposal isn't draconian in the slightest, and say that they've got the backing of many drivers, including those that still smoke behind the wheel. A total of 1,100 were asked by whether they'd support total ban on smoking in cars: 96pc of non-smokers supported a ban, while 89pc of smokers supported a ban often because "it might help me give up"; while those against a ban complained that it was a further erosion of liberties and their human rights.

It's not just about the health benefits to drivers and passengers. Studies show that smoking is a distracting activity that can be just as disruptive to driver concentration as using a phone at the wheel. One study found that smokers are 1.5 times more likely to have a motoring accident than a non-smoker. believes that a smoking ban would make enforcement of the existing commercial-vehicle smoking ban easier.


Sunday Independent

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