Cars with kids – summary overview

Things have been moving quickly in terms of legislation to prohibit
smoking in vehicles with kids.  Below is an updated overview.

In Canada, there are now five provinces/territories (BC, ON, NS, PEI,
Yukon) that have brought forward legislation to prohibit smoking in
vehicles with children, and three others (NB, Man, Nfld & Lab) that have
said that they are considering it or watching what other provinces are
doing. Nova Scotia (age 19) and Yukon Territory (age 18) have adopted
legislation.   Government bills have been introduced and are before
provincial legislatures in B.C. (Bill 36) and Ontario (Bill 69).  The
PEI Government has tabled a draft bill.  New Brunswick is considering
it. Manitoba and Newfoundland and Labrador are watching what other
provinces are doing.   As well, a private member’s bill has been
introduced in Manitoba, and a news report says that an Alberta MLA will
introduce a private member’s bill.  Laws have also been adopted in
Wolfville (Nova Scotia), the U.S. states of California, Maine, Arkansas
and Louisiana, the U.S. municipalities of Bangor (Maine), Keyport (New
Jersey), and Rockland County (New York), as well as Puerto Rico and the
Australian states of South Australia and Tasmania.

Vehicles with kids – international overview

Laws Banning Smoking in Vehicles Carrying Children – International Overview

Canadian Cancer Society : August 1, 2008

Summary: Laws prohibiting smoking in vehicles carrying children have been adopted in the Canadian provinces/territories of Nova Scotia, Ontario, British Columbia and the Yukon Territory, the Canadian municipalities of Wolfville (Nova Scotia), Surrey (British Columbia) and Okotoks (Alberta), the U.S. states of California, Maine, Arkansas, and Louisiana, the U.S. municipalities of Bangor (Maine), Keyport (New Jersey), West Long Branch Borough (New Jersey) and Rockland County (New York), as well as South Africa, Puerto Rico and the Australian states of South Australia and Tasmania.  In Canada, the provinces Prince Edward Island (draft bill announced) and Manitoba (announcement by Premier) are moving forward with legislation.  In Australia, the Governments of the Australian Capital Territory and the states of Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales are also considering bringing forward such legislation.3  In the U.S., bills are currently before several U.S. state legislatures.

Listed below are the jurisdictions, the applicable age, the date of coming into force, and the date the law was adopted. Applicable age refers to under the age, thus “19″ (for example) means that smoking is prohibited in a vehicle carrying someone under age 19.

 

Jurisdiction                 Applicable Age                       Date Law                    Date Law

in Force                       Adopted

Canadian provinces/territories

1. Nova Scotia                         19                    April 1, 2008               Dec. 13, 2007

2. Yukon Territory                   18                    May 15, 2008              Apr. 22, 2008

3. British Columbia                  16                    date to be set                May 29, 2008

4. Ontario                                16                    Jan. 21, 2009               June 18, 2008

 

Canadian municipalities

5. Wolfville, Nova Scotia        19                    June 1, 2008                Nov. 19, 2007

6. Surrey, British Columbia     19                    July 31, 2008               July 14, 2008

7. Okotoks, Alberta                 16                    Sept. 1, 2008               July 15, 2008

 

U.S. states

8. Arkansas                  if car seat required[i]      July 21, 2006               Apr. 10, 2006

9. Louisiana                              13[ii]                  Aug. 15, 2006             July 5, 2006

10. California                          18                    Jan. 1, 2008                 Oct. 10, 2007

11. Maine                                16                    Sept. 1, 2008               Apr. 10, 2008

 

U.S. municipalities

12. Bangor, Maine                   18                    Jan. 18, 2007               Jan. 8, 2007

13. Keyport, New Jersey         18                    Apr. 26, 2007              Apr. 24, 2007

14. Rockland County, N.Y.     18                    June 21, 2007              June 15, 2007

15. West Long Branch Borough, NJ    18                    June 9, 2007                June 6, 2007

 

Australian states and territories[iii]

16. South Australia                   16                   May 31, 2007              Apr. 5, 2007

17. Tasmania                           18                    Jan. 1, 2008                 Dec. 19, 2007

Countries

18. South Africa                      12                    date to be set                Feb. 23, 2008

 

Other

19. Puerto Rico                                    13                    Mar. 2, 2007                Mar. 2, 2006

(US Commonwealth in Caribbean)

 

In Arkansas, a car seat is required when a child is less than six years of age and weighs less than sixty pounds (per s. 27-34-104(b) of the Arkansas State Code).

Louisiana Revised Statue 32:295 sets out various rules for car seat and seat belt use that apply to all child passengers up to and including age 12.

For the state of New South Wales, see “Smoking ban to hit parents in NSW cars” The Daily Telegraph, Nov. 9, 2007.

For the Australian Capital Territory, see Media Release, Jon Stanhope, Chief Minister, Australian Capital Territory, June 6, 2007:

For Queensland, see Queensland Government Joint Statement, Premier – The Honourable Anna Bligh, Minister for Health – The Honourable Stephen Robertson, “Bligh Government toughens anti-smoking legislation” May 26, 2008; see also “Bligh bans smoking in cars with kids”, The Daily Telegraph, May 26, 2008:

For Victoria, see “MP introduces bill to ban youth smoking”, ABC News, June 12, 2008:  Bill 65, Tobacco (Control of Tobacco Effects on Minors) Bill 2007 (see section 4), This bill was adopted by the Legislative Council on June 25, 2008, followed by the Legislative Assembly returning the bill back to the Legislative Council with a message that the bill seeks an appropriation from the Consolidated Fund.

On Thursday Nov. 27, Manitoba’s Minister of Infrastructure and Transportation, Ron Lemieux, introduced Bill 5, The Highway Traffic Amendment Act (Promoting Safer and Healthier Conditions in Motor Vehicles).  The bill would ban smoking in vehicles carrying children under age 16, with the bill to come into effect on a date to be fixed by proclamation.   Four provinces/territories have banned smoking in vehicles carrying children: Yukon (age 18); B.C. (age 16); Ontario (age 16), N.S. (age 19).  A draft bill was tabled for comment in PEI (age 19).   The Government’s news release and several news items are below To see the bill, visit:

 

Bill 5 would also ban use of cell phones or hand held electronic devices by drivers, with some exceptions.

 

 

 

 

 

Earlier, on Monday Nov. 24, opposition Liberal MLA Kevin Lamoureux had reintroduced his bill to ban smoking in vehicles carrying children under age 12.   To see Bill 201, The Non-Smokers Health Protection Amendment Act (Protecting Children from Second-Hand Smoke in Motor Vehicles), visit:

 

 

 

http://web2.gov.mb.ca/bills/39-3/b201e.php <http://web2.gov.mb.ca/bills/39-3/b201e.php>

 

 

 

Previously, on Thursday Nov. 20, the Manitoba Government’s Throne Speech included the following:

 

 

 

“This year our government will introduce new legislation to ban smoking in cars when children are present and the use of hand-held cellphones or text messaging devices while driving.”

 

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http://news.gov.mb.ca/news/index.html?archive=&item=4835

 

 

 

Manitoba Government, News Release, November 27, 2008

 

 

PROPOSED BAN ON HAND-HELD CELL PHONE USE, TEXT MESSAGING WHILE DRIVING WOULD ENHANCE PUBLIC SAFETY: LEMIEUX

 

 

- – -

Proposed HTA Amendments Would Also Ban Smoking in Vehicles When Children are Present

 

Proposed amendments to the Highway Traffic Act (HTA) introduced in the Manitoba legislature today would ban text messaging and talking on hand-held cell phones while driving, as well as smoking in cars when children under the age of 16 are present, Infrastructure and Transportation Minister Ron Lemieux has announced.

 

 

 

“We all know how important it is to pay full attention while behind the wheel, and imposing such a law removes a major distraction, helping to ensure motorists focus their attention on what matters most – the road,” said Lemieux. “This legislation renews our government’s commitment to increasing safety on the province’s roads.”

 

 

 

“Second-hand smoke increases a child’s risk of developing a serious respiratory illness,” said Healthy Living Minister Kerri Irvin-Ross.  ”This new legislation will help protect Manitoba children from exposure to the harmful effects of second-hand tobacco smoke.”

 

 

 

“Physicians are very supportive of all these amendments and commend the Manitoba government for taking these steps to protect Manitobans,” said Dr. Robyn Olson, president of the Manitoba Medical Association (MMA). “There is strong evidence of the dangers second-hand smoke creates and this goes a long way to clearing the air for all.”

 

 

 

Olson also noted the MMA conducted a survey in May 2007 and found that 75 per cent of Manitobans supported a ban on cell phone use while driving.

 

 

 

Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Quebec have comparable bans on hand-held cell phones. Ontario has also recently introduced legislated proposals banning the use of hand-held cell phones while driving.

 

 

Several jurisdictions have introduced prohibitions on smoking in vehicles with children present including British Columbia, Ontario, Nova Scotia and the Yukon.

 

 

 

Manitoba’s proposed legislation would allow for the use of hands-free communication devices when used in a hands-free manner.

 

 

 

Lemieux noted an extensive public education campaign will be rolled out to inform the public and give motorists access to the information they need prior to the proposed amendments becoming law.

 

 

 

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Manitoba introduces bill to limit cellphone use, smoking in cars The Canadian Press

 

Nov. 27, 2008

 

 

WINNIPEG – Proposed legislation could see Manitoba drivers facing fines for using hand-held cellphones or for smoking if children were in a vehicle.

 

The NDP government has introduced a bill aimed at increasing road safety and protecting young people from second-hand smoke.

 

Similar to laws in other provinces, the legislation would prevent drivers from using hand-held devices such as phones or text-messaging equipment unless they pulled over to the side of the road.

 

The law would also ban anyone from smoking in a car if a child under 16 were present.

 

Drivers who didn’t comply would face fines of at least $195.

 

Transportation Minister Ron Lemieux can’t say when the bill might become law, but adds there will be a public education campaign first to warn people about the new rules.

 

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Manitoba to force drivers to hang up, butt out CBC.CA News Nov. 27, 2008 [Winnipeg]

 

 

Manitoba’s NDP government has followed other jurisdictions by moving to ban drivers from talking on a hand-held phone while behind the wheel.

 

The province also plans to levy fines against drivers who smoke with children under 16 in the car.

 

&ldquo;We all know how important it is to pay full attention while behind the wheel,” Infrastructure and Transportation Minister Ron Lemieux said as the government introduced the legislation Thursday.

 

Manitoba’s Healthy Living Minister Kerri Irvin-Ross said doctors support the effort to curb the spread of second-hand smoke. &ldquo;This new legislation will help protect Manitoba children from exposure to the harmful effects of second-hand tobacco smoke,&rdquo; she said.

 

Drivers caught using a cellphone behind the wheel will be fined $190, officials said. And anyone caught smoking with a youngster in the car faces a $220 fine.

 

Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Quebec have similar bans on hand-held cellphones. Ontario has also recently introduced similar changes to the law. At least six U.S. states have similar bans.

 

Several jurisdictions have introduced prohibitions on smoking in vehicles with children present including British Columbia, Ontario, Nova Scotia and the Yukon.

 

Manitoba&rsquo;s proposed legislation would allow for the use of hands-free mobile phones.

 

Police will be expected to enforce the changes in the Highway Traffic Act in the same way as the current seatbelt law is enforced.

 

A public education campaign will be rolled out before the proposed amendments become law.

 

The new measures come about at a time when the Doer government has announced a series of other bans. The NDP government just announced it will ban logging operations in all but one of Manitoba&rsquo;s 80 parks by April 1, 2009.

 

And a ban on non-biodegradable plastic bags will be phased in over two years.