Smoking in cars carrying children set to be banned

Health Minister Simon Hamilton
Health Minister Simon Hamilton

Smoking in cars carrying children is set to be banned in Northern Ireland.

Stormont health minister Simon Hamilton has tabled an amended to proposed legislation on smoking regulations that will make it illegal to light up when transporting a child.

Addressing the Assembly in Belfast, Mr Hamilton said he had responded to concerns raised when a prohibition was not incorporated into the first draft of his proposed Health (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill.

“Many were understandably concerned at the omission from the Bill of a clause banning smoking in cars with children,” he said.

“I have listened carefully to the arguments made by many that Northern Ireland should follow the example of other parts of the United Kingdom, and I confirm to the House today that it is my intention to bring forward an amendment at consideration stage (of the legislation) to ban smoking in cars with children.”

Mr Hamilton said his proposed law changes would also make it illegal to sell e-cigarettes to minors.

He added: “A provision to allow the department to create an offence of the proxy purchasing of these products – in other words, an adult purchasing an e-cigarette on behalf of a minor – is also included.”