good news for non smokers, but without strong enforcement, things will remain the same...
Originally Posted by www.straitstimes.comSmoking ban extended
By Jermyn Chow
FROM January 1, smokers will have to stub out in all hotel lobbies and 5 metres away from all entrances and exits of buildings.
The smoking ban will also cover almost all indoor places, with the inclusion of non-air-conditioned premises like lift lobbies, markets, multi-storey and basement carparks. Smoking will also be banned in outdoor areas like playgrounds and exercise areas.
The National Environment Agency (NEA) on Friday said it is widening the list of smoke-free places to keep the air cleaner and further protect the public from the harmful health effects of second-hand smoke.
The move is also in line with the World Health Organisation recommendations.
'The ban has been extended to indoor public places and lift lobbies because these are areas where public would find it hard to escape from second-hand smoke,' said the NEA.
'Entrances and exits to buildings and facilities where smoking is already prohibited were also included in the ban extension because feedback and checks on the ground have shown that smokers tend to congregate near these areas to smoke.'
Second-hand smoke, also known as 'environmental tobacco smoke or passive smoking', kills and scientific evidence shows that there is no safe level of exposure.
It can cause serious medical conditions including lung cancer, heart disease, asthma attacks, childhood respiratory disease, sudden infant death syndrom and reduced lung function.
Mr Lee Yuen Hee, Chief Executive Officer of the NEA, said on Friday: 'We are encouraged by the positive feedback from many individuals and families who support the extension of the smoking ban and appreciate the effort of smokers who have chosen not to light up in smoke-free areas, helping to promote clean air and good health.'
The NEA will be rolling out a series of publicity activities to inform the public of the extended ban. It has also conducted meetings and dialogues with various parties and will work with building and facilities managers to ensure smooth implementation of the ban.