Legislation banning smoking in vehicles when a child is on board has been backed by Holyrood’s Health Committee in Scotland. The Smoking Prohibition (Children in Motor Vehicles) (Scotland) Bill was introduced by Liberal Democrat MSP Jim Hume.
If found to be smoking in cars where children are on board, the motorist will be fined £100. The move has already been backed in principle by the Scottish Government, Scottish Labour and leading health charities.
Although the motorist will be criminally liable in such an instance, the Health Committee has asked Mr Hume and the Government to consider if an alternative such as an education programme may be sufficient.
Committee convener Duncan McNeil said: “From our work into this issue it became clear that there is strong public support for this legislation. Our committee believes that no child should have to experience the effects of second hand smoke in cars and that this legislation will tackle significantly this harmful behaviour.
“Whilst the person smoking should be held criminally responsible, we have also proposed that a similar sanction should be in place for the driver. This would also provide consistency with similar legislation in England and Wales.”
Committee deputy convener Bob Dorris added: “A key factor in the success of these proposals will be an effective enforcement regime. We would support this being extended to local authorities who could work alongside Police Scotland to effectively enforce this law, should it be passed by the Parliament.”