New laws are coming into force on 1st October 2015 that will impact on those people tempted to light up in private vehicles.
The new legislation does not apply to boats, ships or aircraft and nor does it apply to work vehicles or public transport as these modes of transport are already covered by existing legislation in a move to a more smoke-free environment.
From 1st October it will be an offence for anyone to smoke in an enclosed private vehicle where there is a person under the age of 18 present. The law, however, takes the principle of ensuring a smoke-free vehicle environment for under 18’s further. It will also be an offence for the driver, including a provisional driver, not to stop someone smoking in the vehicle if there is a person under 18 present.
The rules do not apply if:
The cigarette is an e-cigarette;
You are a driver under the age of 18 and are alone in the vehicle;
If everyone in the vehicle is over 18.
What does ‘enclosed vehicle’ mean?
The rules apply to any private vehicle that is enclosed by a roof either completely, or in part.
A convertible car with the roof down and stowed away does not classify as enclosed and therefore the rules do not apply.
An open window or sunroof will still classified as an enclosed vehicle and the rules will apply.
The penalties for the new offences are set to come within the fixed penalty regime though the police retain their discretion in deciding whether to issue warnings, fixed penalty notices or refer an offence to Court. Where a fixed penalty notice is offered, each offence committed will attract a £50 notice. For those individuals whose offences are referred to Court the charges could be considerably higher.
Milne Moser Solicitors offer specialist representation in all aspects of Road Traffic Law, with legislation creating ever more duties upon the drivers of vehicles in the UK it is every more important to stay up to date! Should representation be required, Milne Moser Solicitors are on hand to advise and represent.
For further advice and representation, call Rachel or Suzie on 01539 729786.
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