1,580 fines for illegal smoking issued Jan-Sept: SSM

2021-10-20 03:22     BY Prisca Tang    Comment:0

The Health Bureau (SSM) said in a statement yesterday that anti-smoking inspectors issued 1,580 illegal smoking fines between January and September this year.

According to the statement, the inspectors patrolled a number of venues 221,160 times from January 1 to September 30, or 78.7 percent more often than in the same period of last year. The statement noted that in the first three quarters, the inspectors issued 1,603 fines for reasons such as illegal smoking, illegal selling of e-cigarettes and selling cigarettes to people under the age of 18.

The statement said that amongst the 1,580 illegal smokers, 1,457 or 92.2 percent were males, while 123 or 7.8 percent were females. The statement also noted that 1,017 illegal smokers, or 64.4 percent of the total, were local residents, while 27.9 percent were visitors and 122 were non-resident workers.

Meanwhile, the statement pointed out that in 59 cases inspectors requested police assistance, adding that 84.9 percent of the offenders have meanwhile paid their fines. The statement said that illegal smoking usually takes place in eateries, shopping malls, or parks and leisure areas.

The statement also said that in the first three quarters, 117 cases of illegal smoking were detected in casinos during inspections, comprising 104 male, and 13 female offenders. The statement noted that 61.5 percent of the illegal smokers at casinos were visitors, while 36.8 percent were locals and two were non-resident workers.

According to the statement, the bureau’s anti-smoking office received 1,247 calls in the first nine months of the year, comprising 498 enquiries, 709 complaints and 125 calls from residents providing feedback.

The statement also underlined that the anti-smoking brigade identified 107 smoking “blackspots” such as Cheng Feng Commercial Centre in Nape, the University of Macau Hengqin campus, and Mocha Kuong Fat.

The bureau reminded residents that with the exception of the airport and local casinos that have officially designated smoking lounges, all indoor smoking has been banned and the non-smoking areas at bus stops cover 10 metres on either side. The statement stressed that violators are fined 1,500 patacas. For more information, residents can call 2855 6789. 

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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