Companies in the U.K. face fines of up to £2,500 ($4,878.75) for failing to enforce anti-smoking laws which come into effect in England on July 1, reports British fleet Web site Company Car Driver. Under the 2006 Health Act, all enclosed public places and work places will become smokefree—including company cars and rental cars. Any vehicle used as a workplace by more than one person, regardless of whether they are in the vehicle at the same time, will be required to be smokefree at all times. Drivers of convertible cars will be exempt as long as the roof is down when they or their passengers are smoking. Smoking will be allowed in vehicles that are for the sole use of the driver and are not used by anyone else, either as a driver or passenger. This legislation has been developed to protect both smokers and non-smokers from secondhand smoke. Even if both drivers who use the vehicle are smokers, the vehicle is required to be smokefree. Under the Act, employers, managers and those in charge of smokefree premises and vehicles will need to display 'no smoking' signs and ensure that no one smokes in smoke-free premises or vehicles, according to Company Car Driver. The government has proposed that local authorities will enforce smokefree legislation, while acknowledging that this legislation will be largely self-enforcing. An 0800 telephone number will be available for the public to report smoking offenses. The proposed penalty amounts:
  • Smoking in a smokefree premises or vehicle: a fixed penalty notice of £50 ($97.58) or a fine of up to £200 ($390.30).
  • Failure to display no smoking signs in smokefree premises and vehicles: a fixed penalty notice of £200 or a fine of up to £1,000 ($1,951.50).
  • Failing to prevent smoking in a smokefree premises or vehicle: a fine of up to £2,500 ($4,878.75).