Crackdown to stamp out potty puffers in taxis and white vans

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TAXI drivers and white van men could be snared by a new crackdown on smoking.

The two-month campaign aims to remind people who drive vehicles for business purposes that smoking is not allowed at work.

Anyone caught having a sly puff faces a £50 fine (£30 if paid in 14 days). In addition, any public vehicle not displaying a no-smoking sign could see its operator hit with a £200 fine (£150 if paid in a fortnight).

The offensive has been launched by East Dunbartonshire Council’s licensing standards team, in partnership with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

Councillor Ashay Ghai, convener of the council’s housing and community services committee, said: “We regularly receive complaints about drivers, including taxi drivers, smoking in their vehicles.

“Clearly, although the law has been in place for six years, there are still people flouting it. It’s time to remind people of the law and get tough on repeat offenders.

“The health risks associated with second-hand smoke are well-documented. It’s just not right that anyone, especially pregnant women and children, should be subjected to passive smoking in a public vehicle.

“I should say the majority of businesses do comply with the law, but it is those who do not who we are interested in making contact with.”

The law applies to all business vehicles including light and heavy goods vehicles, and all public transport such as taxis, buses, trains and ferries.

All taxi and public service vehicle businesses across East Dunbartonshire have received a letter advising them of the campaign.

Local licensing officers, environmental wardens and Strathclyde Police will be out and about across the area providing businesses with advice and support on the regulations.

Officers can dish out fixed penalty notices on the spot if they see anyone smoking inside a business vehicle or failing to display no-smoking signs.

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