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New Law Bans Smoking in Cars Carrying Children Under 18

Updated on October 1, 2015

For a pictorial essay, check Google Images

This has been a huge campaign and bitterly fought by the health authorities and concerned parents, etc., on the one side, and guess who on the other! If you said "BIG TOBACCO" your smokes will arrive soon!
This has been a huge campaign and bitterly fought by the health authorities and concerned parents, etc., on the one side, and guess who on the other! If you said "BIG TOBACCO" your smokes will arrive soon!

Compliance? don't (ahem) hold your breath!

It becomes law in Britain today, October 1, 2015, making it illegal for anyone in a car carrying one or more children under 18 - to smoke.

As you can imagine, the law is proving very controversial especially as our “go get 'em” police have said they don't have the man-power to enforce the law, (which carries a £60 pound fine...about $100).

In the UK, many crimes go unpunished due to lack of police personnel, such as speeding; our motorways have become “corridors of death” with modern vehicles able to do 150 MPH, plus and no effective highway patrol. (100 mph seems to be the norm in the fast lane).

If dangerous driving like this (the official limit is 70) receives little attention, it is unlikely the chap doing 90 with the family in the back and sucking on a fat stogie will have the Flying Squad after him! Many people can't get the police to respond to burglaries or domestic violence, and if they do turn up it is often hours after the event.

Those doctors and legislators who have pushed the law through the Commons, etc., say “Even if the police cannot adequately enforce the act, the public will surely understand that smoking in an enclosed space is bad for their children with the dangers well documented of passive smoking and many will stop doing so.” Nah. Addicts, pressurized by our choked roads, will light-up regardless.

This writer is a life-time enemy of tobacco cigarettes and the new Vaping (for the vapid!) is nearly as bad. A fuzzy area here, how will anyone tell the difference as the passing clouds of noxious expelled breath and vapour fog the windows? With 8 months of winter coming, few will have their windows open, not that that affects the legality.

Even with the lethargy expressed by police spokespersons, many thousands will be ticketed, even those having a quiet smoke in the high street as they pick up the kiddywinks from school. This will result in a nice stealth tax for the government: the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, is very creative with this type of income in order to regularly find the money to give to the failed banks and raise the salary of parliamentarians.

My solution is to install smoke alarms in vehicles which would shriek when they pick up smoke. Easily done as the technology exists everywhere.

But that way the Tories won't get all those delicious tax pounds.


Fine is £50, not £60

All adults smoking will be fined as well as the driver, (even if only the passengers are smoking)

OK to smoke in onvertibles with roof fully down

E-Cigs are OK (for the moment)

More than 20 countries now have a version of this law, as well as 12 states in the US.


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    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 8 months ago from UK and Mexico

      Hi Misty: Still winter..."Ne'er cast a clout,

      till May is out," as some wise yokel once observed.

      UK is useful in a way: it breaks one in for death.

      Trouble with me is I have seen too many far greener places, as the poet said.

      I'm fine, changed from insulin to heroin and feel a bit more relaxed.

      Love Bobxo

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 8 months ago from North Texas

      Very hard to enforce this law I'll bet, but a good idea. Maybe put alarms on the roofs of vehicles that flash and shriek whenever conventional or electronic tobacco products are in use and that send a message to the police dept. stating time and location of the vehicle so they can mail a ticket to the owner of the vehicle.

      Thought you would have another new article when I got here today. We have had an unusually cool spring. We've had the occasional 90s temp, but mostly 70s, and now mid 80s. Afraid we're in another drought too.

      Hope you are doing well and not getting into too much trouble. Suppose it's still winter over there most days . . . Take care . . xxx

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 21 months ago

      But should this really need to be a new law? What ever happened to parental guidance and responsibility?

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 21 months ago from Nashville Tn.

      We all know about the effects of second-hand smoking. My question is...why has it taken so long to ban this practice of smoking in the car? To my knowledge, this is still ok in the U.S. and it sends me 'over-the-edge.'

      Thanks Bob for a thought-provoking hub which I will pass on and on and on. :)


    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 23 months ago from North Texas

      It isn't nearly as bad, it is as bad (vaping). Bad for people who must inhale the second hand vape too, just like second hand smoke is worse than first hand so they say. Will be republishing my article on this subject of electronic piggies one of these days. Published on a different site until they stopped paying and I can't afford to subsidize these sites right now.

      I hate smoke, allergic to it as bad as animals. Love animals however, but recreational smoking gets no slack from me. If our government weren't so hooked on the taxes from that smoking we could do away with it completely. Yes, hard to enforce sometimes, but not impossible.

      Glad you have that law even if it isn't enforce as it needs to be. Would be a good way to create some jobs. Pass a law with a smoke detector in every vehicle so that the detector keeps a memory of when it happened. Require owners of the vehicles to have them inspected monthly and fine them for every time the detector went off in the past month. Reset at the inspection. :)

      Smoking is no more necessary than sorting cocaine. Both should be illegal. Both kill, it's just that tobacco kills more because it's legal.

      Hope all is well there. Take care . . . xxx

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 2 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Dear aviannovice

      Yes, often the case, but smokers here are such abject people, they seem so ashamed at their habit. Perhaps the anti lobby has gone a bit too far, but not where passive smoking in kids is concerned.

      Nice to hear from ya

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      The more illegal we make something sometimes, the more popular it becomes. It is to defy the lawmakers, I think.

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 2 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Will. As I heard a famous entertainer say, whose name escapes me for the minute, No, it was Larry Hagman..."Whatever you succeed at in life, if you smoke you're a looser."

      It is the most unnatural act humans do - imagine a cow with a bunch of smoking grass in its mouth!

      They won't or can't quit, though. One way to stop many would make the NHS unavailable to drinkers and smokers; blood tests would reveal costs the NHS a billion a year curing people of the results of tobacco and alcohol addiction.


    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 2 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Hi Mike (OP): The poet said "The world is with us too early and too late." That is a marvellous quote: from the innocence and purity of children, we become all the complex strivings the adult until, at the end of our lives, we realize what a shallow dance it all was and we see life and the creatures living it for what they are. Our innocence ha returned as it were.


    • ahorseback profile image

      ahorseback 2 years ago

      Actually I only smoke in a gun fight !

      No , never did , never will !

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 2 years ago

      Great idea WillStarr, but unfortunately that would be about as successful as prohibition was. Many would get very wealthy selling illegal tobacco products and providing a place for people to smoke without fear from the law.

      Many of these same people would end up being Politicians after they made their first fortune so they could make their second fortune.

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 2 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      The obvious question is why not have a total ban on smoking, rather than all these patchwork laws?

      I gave it up over 20 years ago, and thank God I did, but many of those who hammer tobacco smokers see nothing wrong with clouds of stinking marijuana smoke wafting through the neighborhood.

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 2 years ago

      What we really need is just one "Common Sense Law" with a three strikes and your out rule. The only problem would be how to deal with those who just don't have enough Common Sense to stay within the law.

      Perhaps we could find an island where all those without common sense could be sent to live with their own kind. Unfortunately Common Sense is a gift we are born with. There are no Common Sense schools, you either have it or you don't.

      But after thinking about this a little more, I doubt that one island would hold all of those who need to live there unless their lack of Common Sense killed them off rapidly.

      So yet another un-enforcable law goes on the books to protect innocent people such as children. All the laws on the books now don't protect us from "Stupid." What makes them think one more law like this will make life better for everyone?

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 2 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Exactly, ahorseback. Who controls smoking at home??

      I suppose you cowboys can still smoke at full gallop!?


    • ahorseback profile image

      ahorseback 2 years ago

      Its funny , of all the smoking bans in America , I've always wondered about "in the car " smoking , every day I see this , a car full of kids and a mom or dad smoking or what about at home ? Why have any laws at all if not to protect the innocent ? Such Hypocrisy!