Push to ban smoking near Melborne tourist…


Smokers and vapers will have a tough time lighting up in Melbourne, as new regulations are proposed to ban cigarettes and e-cigarette devices near local landmarks.

Across the city, smoking bans are already in place across 13 areas, including the popular Bourke Street Mall, Fulham Place, Collins Way and Market Street Park.

Community health concerns are behind the change, sparking City of Melbourne council’s consideration of the ban near transport hubs and other civic places.

Smoking bans have been proposed to minimise smoke pollution outside council buildings like Melbourne Town Hall. Picture: NCA NewsWire / David Crosling

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The council is assessing which areas should be smoke free, upgrading no smoking/vaping signs in popular spots across the CBD.

The ban is being especially considered around council-owned properties like the Melbourne Town Hall in Swanston St.

A new no-vaping sign at Howey Place. City of Melbourne has started installing no-vaping signs as it moves to extend no smoking areas in the inner city. Picture: Nicki Connolly

Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp said there was an alarmingly high level of e-cigarette or “vape” usage among young Victorians.

“We know that smoking is incredibly harmful, not just for smokers themselves but for recipients of second-hand smoke,” she said.

Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp says vaping in the CBD is ‘alarming’. Picture: Mark Stewart

Quit Victoria director Sarah White said second-hand vaping smoke wasn’t as harmless as people might believe, especially to those with asthma or people sensitive to the fruitlike scents often found in popular devices.

“There is absolutely work to do,” she said.

“These smoke-free spaces actually really help people to stop smoking.”

She said people trying to quit were often triggered by clouds of smoke in busy areas.

Cities in places like California have banned smoking completely, but Dr White said the City of Melbourne City had no plans to wipe it out altogether.

Vapes are accessed through convenience stores across the country. Picture: Jake Nowakowski

“They’re really trying to stop people smoking at the entrances to buildings,” she said.

Vaping levels across the country are rising, especially among younger people, as disposable vapes are easily accessible from convenience stores.

“We’re confident the upgraded signage will help minimise opportunities to use e-cigarettes in our municipality,” Ms Capp said.

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