Sinn Féin’s Sandra Duffy welcomes plans to ban smoking in cars

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Sinn Féin Councillor Sandra Duffy has welcomed plans from the Health Minister to ban smoking in cars which have more than one passenger.

Robin Swann announced yesterday that he would be working to prevent people smoking in cars in which children were present as well as preventing the sale of nicotine inhaling products to those aged under 18.

Councillor Sandra Duffy says, “This ban will help protect people, particularly children and young people, from the damaging impact of second-hand smoking.

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“Breathing in second-hand smoke has a damaging impact on people’s health.”

When a cigarette is smoked, most of the rolled-up contents escape to the outside environment and don’t make it into the smoker’s lungs. This can then be inhaled by those close to the smoker and can damage the health of those close to them.

Passengers in a car are especially susceptible to second hand smoking, even when the window is open, as the smoke gets blown into the car and circulated, to be inhaled by those travelling in the vehicle.

In England and Wales, it became illegal in 2015 to smoke in a vehicle with someone under 18 and is punishable by a £50 fine. Robin Swann wants to prioritise plans to change the law in the north to match that of the UK.

The Health Minister also plans to ban the sale of nicotine inhalation products to those under 18.