Smoking in vehicles is banned in NI from February

Smoking in vehicles in Northern Ireland will not be allowed from 1 February 2022.

Legislation is already in place under the Smoke-free (Premises, Vehicle Operators and Penalty Notices) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2007 which bans smoking in certain premises, places and vehicles including on public transport and in work vehicles used by more than one person.

From 1 February 2022 the Smoke-Free (Private Vehicles) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2021 (SR 2021 No. 328) extend the current smoke-free provisions to private vehicles where children are present (persons under the age of 18), when there is more than one person in the car and when the vehicle is enclosed.

The Smoke-free (Premises, Vehicle Operators and Penalty Notices) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2021 (SR 2021 No. 332) provide that the driver of a vehicle is responsible for ensuring that smoking does not take place.

A no-smoking sign must be displayed in the vehicle. Failing to prevent smoking in a private vehicle is now an offence, as is failing to display prescribed no-smoking signs. New fixed penalty notice forms are issued. The Police Service of Northern Ireland, in addition to the district councils, will be an enforcement authority in respect of smoke-free vehicles.

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