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Restriction on smoking in motor vehicles (Smokefree car Jersey)

​What the law means

It is illegal to smoke in a motor vehicle carrying young people under the age of 18. This includes all enclosed motor vehicles carrying one or more under 18s.

When the law comes into place

From 1 September 2015 it will be illegal to smoke and to allow smoking in a car carrying young people under the age of 18.

The driver is responsible for preventing smoking in a car carrying anyone under 18 years. A driver can face a fine of £500 for smoking themselves and £2000 for not preventing smoking.

Any other passenger smoking where an under 18 is present will also be liable for a fine of £500.

Why the law is in place

The need for a law to ban smoking in cars carrying young people is because:

  • second-hand smoke (also known as passive smoking) contains high levels of toxins and carcinogens
  • second-hand smoke is harmful to everyone, but children are particularly at risk as they breathe more rapidly, so breathe more in
  • 81% of people in Jersey support smokefree cars
  • children who breathe in second-hand smoke are more at risk of serious health problems, including asthma attacks, meningitis and bronchitis
  • there is no safe level of second-hand smoke in a motor vehicle, even with the windows rolled down
  • children have little control or choice over breathing in second-hand smoke
  • the pollution levels caused by smoking in a car can be 35 times greater than levels considered safe by the World Health Organisation
  • it's estimated that up to 1800 under 18s in Jersey may be exposed to second-hand smoke in cars on a weekly basis​

Exemptions to the law

There are few exemptions to the law. These include:

  • open-top or convertible-style cars (the evidence of harm from second-hand tobacco smoke is specifically from smoke in an enclosed vehicle whether or not windows are open)
  • any stationary vehicle that is permanently equipped to be a person’s primary residence


Failure to comply with the law is a criminal offence.

If you are caught smoking in your motor vehicle, you could be fined between £500 and £2500.

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