Is it illegal to smoke in a bus shelter?

When the smoking ban officially came into effect in England on July 1 2007, it marked not only a huge emphasis on encouraging people to adopt a healthier lifestyle, but it also altered the smoking habits of millions of people.

Pubs, restaurants, work environments and all manner of other places became, overnight, smoke-free. What is perhaps most surprising is the fact that once the law was introduced, the overwhelming majority of people and establishments fell in line and complied.

smoking declinedAccording to research carried out by LGA in the wake of the ban, 98.2 percent of all premises inspected in the 18 months following the ban were found to be compliant, while ONS figures suggest that following the ban, the number of active smokers across the UK massively declined.

But despite the ban’s undoubted success, there are still some elements that remain unclear, even though it was incorporated into law almost 15 years ago. Such as, is it illegal to smoke in a bus shelter?

So, with that in mind, let’s take a closer look at where it is illegal to smoke, and where it is still possible to light up and take a drag.

Are you allowed to smoke in bus shelter?

Because most bus shelters are not entirely enclosed, it is difficult to know – without having prior knowledge – if they are included in the smoking ban as an ‘indoor space’. The vast majority of bus shelters in the UK have two supporting walls and a roof, which means that it is considered as being ‘substantially enclosed’. If this is the case, then it would be illegal to smoke while sheltered within this structure.

However, if the shelter has an opening in the walls, or does not have a roof that encloses the structure, or if there is a roof that is only supported by one wall rather than two, then it is in fact perfectly legal for a smoker to inhale their nicotine-infused vice.

It is also worth noting that Transport for London (TfL) has banned smoking in all of its bus shelters.

What is included in the ban, and what isn’t?

So, given that bus shelters are a little bit of a grey area, let’s take a look at other places that are and aren’t included in the ban.

Places that aren’t banned included:

– Specially designated hotel rooms
– Some rooms in prisons
– Some rooms on oil rigs
– Specialist tobacco stores that have applied for a license
– The Palace of Westminster

Places that are banned include:

– Public transport
– Nightclubs and pubs
– Private member clubs
– Restaurants and cafes
– Shopping centres

Ace Shelters

As one of the UK’s Leading Shelter Manufacturing companies, we provide an experienced range of bus shelters for the public sector. Should you need a smoking shelter solution for a company you know, then please take a look at our quality range of smoking shelter available and get in touch with Ace Shelters via telephone/email or simply use our contact page form.