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Sweden eyes smoking ban in parks and cars

The Local · 12 Mar 2013, 13:41

Published: 12 Mar 2013 13:41 GMT+01:00

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The agency is currently reviewing Sweden's current smoking ban as part of an effort to present a formal proposal to the government in December this year.

Specifically, health authorities are looking at the extent to which smoking should be banned in areas where people are at risk of inhaling second-hand smoke.

"We're especially looking into environments where children are present," Matthew X Richardson, a department head at the agency, told the Sydsvenskan newspaper.

Smoking in Sweden is already banned in bars, schools, hospitals, buses, trains, and planes.

"We're mapping out the environments where people are at risk of passive smoking and we're investigating if more smoke-free environments should be introduced," he added.

Richardson explained that his team was reviewing smoking policies in other countries to best determine how Sweden should set its own laws.

Sweden's smoking laws are more tolerant than many other countries, with Singapore, Spain, and parts of Australia already enforcing smoking bans in public parks.

Smoking on the beach is already forbidden in Hong Kong, California, Australia, and in several places around the Mediterranean.

The agency is also looking at laws in California in the United States, which in 2008 banned smoking in cars with passengers under 18.

But the idea of an extended smoking ban is nothing new to the Swedish government.

Roger Haddad of Sweden's Liberal Party (Folkpartiet) pushed last year for a smoking ban in bus shelters, a law that's already in place in Scotland.

"You shouldn't need to become a passive smoker just because you want to take a bus," he told Sydsvenskan.

Story continues below…

Other Swedish politicians have previously proposed a ban on smoking at outdoor eateries and train platforms.

And in 2011, Thomas Strand of the Social Democrats suggested that Swedes should be banned from smoking on their balconies.

TT/The Local/og

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Your comments about this article

16:06 March 12, 2013 by rybo1
I'm a smoker and have been for years. However, I never smoke in my car, but I have nothing against people that do and neither should the pin-heads in the government with their liberal-Nazism.

What I do have something against in cars is people jabbering on their mobile phones and paying attention to driving. Driving with one hand on the wheel and yapping on the phone, is impaired driving. Only hands free should be allowed while driving. When will Sweden wake up like many other countries already have?
16:26 March 12, 2013 by aquatic
I dont understand what is the meaning of "public places" in Sweden. I've seen people smoking outside shopping malls, at bus stops, on roads, you name any place. And ofcourse parks.
17:50 March 12, 2013 by fikatid
No smoking in bus shelters for sure. I hate it when people force you to be a second-hand smoker just because you are waiting for a bus.
18:21 March 12, 2013 by EmployedProfessional
I have a question.

Is texting while driving legal?

Well,it sure as hell shouldn't be!

We all know how Stockholmers walk on the streets, chatting and texting,only narrowly avoiding nasty collissions,tripping over curbs,etc.

Not too pleasant if involves a half ton vehicle!
19:41 March 12, 2013 by EtoileBrilliant
Please, please ban smoking in beaches. Our association is responsible for cleaning up our local beach and the number one litter problem is cigarette butts - a nightmare to find in the sand!!

As they say, the first two senses that go when you start smoking are your taste and smell. After that you lose your sense of decency.
20:00 March 12, 2013 by BackpackerKev
With regards to poster#1, Unfortunately whatever the government does, will not improve the quality of driving, I almost refuse to drive in Sweden because of the amount of bad drivers on the roads and this isn't just down to smokers or talking on the phone..

This government will pander to the smokers and not make the right choices. Its all well and good banning smoking in public places, but rarely is this enforced and people always seem to take the risk.

They only did a half job on the smoking bans and the following should have been included

1) No smoking within 5-10M radius of a Bus stop

2) No Smoking within 5M of any public Access to a Public place, Non Smokers are forced to walk through a cloud of Cigarette smoke as you exit most Train Stations

3) No smoking on Train Platforms, Inside and Out

4) No Cigarrette Bins Within 5M of any Public Access, this only promotes people to stand right next to the door blowing their smoke into peoples faces

5) Disposal of cigarette butts are mandatory in bins, The City is a disgusting place made filthy by Smokers. Coming out of lillyholmen and walking 100meters, you are surrounded by cigarette butts lining the streets, surrounding every door. Nonsmokers do not cause this filth, smokers do and it just goes to show the level of respect smokers have for the rest of us who share this once beautiful earth.
20:17 March 12, 2013 by Phillynilly
I have found the best way to get around people who smoke within 2nd hand smoke distance is to reply with carefully aimed flatulence...
20:21 March 12, 2013 by Ulvenkai

Ban smoking completely outside of designated areas and private homes.

The trend is utterly vulgar. Look at Copenhagen Central Station if you want to know what Sweden's public places are likely to turn into. It's a disgusting mess.

Ban it and enforce the ban properly.
21:45 March 12, 2013 by shinnam
BAn smoking at bus stops and tube platforms. One can't get away from the smoke, It will also save on cleaning costs. If South Korea can do it, surely Sweden can.

How about a 5 kr deposit on each cigarette but and snuff packet? That would keep the streets clean.
22:03 March 12, 2013 by dogtom
Let's just face it. All smokers are c**nts and should be drowned at birth...
22:49 March 12, 2013 by matressmonkey
I totally agree that banning any use of a mobile phone while driving should be Sweden's #1 health-related priority. Smoking on the beach is disgusting, but let's be real, texting while driving is infinitely more dangerous.
22:49 March 16, 2013 by HörbDörpmeister
Smoking is a filthy habit and simply put, smokers are junkies. To say that "...texting while driving is infinitely more dangerous" is just plain dumb. Smoking is vastly more deadly and is a huge health crisis in the developed world. Heck, we would probably have 3 more Stieg Larsson novels to read if not for smoking and its adverse health effects.
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