Germany's most populous state toughens smoking ban

(AP)—Germany's most populous state is toughening a ban on smoking in bars and restaurants, closing loopholes in its five-year-old restrictions.

North Rhine-Westphalia, a western region of about 18 million people that includes Cologne, Bonn, Duesseldorf and the Ruhr industrial area, introduced its in 2008—around the same time other German states put similar restrictions into effect.

The state legislature on Thursday approved a toughened version to take effect next May. It shuts loopholes that allowed customers to light up in establishments that designated themselves smoking bars, in special rooms set aside for or in beer tents, among other things. The center-left state government said the original ban had so many it didn't effectively protect nonsmokers.

In future, exceptions will be allowed only for private parties.

0 shares

Related Stories

80% of German pubs still allow smoking: study

date May 03, 2011

More than four out of five pubs in Germany make use of legal loopholes or flout the rules to allow people to smoke, almost three years after a ban, a study by health campaigners showed on Tuesday.

Geneva's smoking ban returns after one-year break

date Sep 27, 2009

A ban on smoking in public places will return to Switzerland's Geneva canton after being approved in a referendum Sunday, a year after a court ended a first bid to prohibit lighting up.

Heavy-smoking Bulgaria eyes extending ban

date Dec 14, 2011

The government of tobacco-addicted Bulgaria proposed Wednesday a total ban on smoking from June 1 in enclosed public places, including cafes, bars and restaurants, its press office said.

Passive smoking under fire when Swiss head to the polls

date Sep 20, 2012

Switzerland is deeply divided ahead of a vote Sunday on whether to beef up a ban on smoking in indoor workplaces and public spaces, with supporters stressing the health benefits of less second-hand smoke and opponents decrying ...

Recommended for you

More than 200,000 road deaths a year in China: WHO

date 58 minutes ago

More than 200,000 people are killed on China's notoriously dangerous roads every year, the World Health Organisation said Wednesday—at least four times official government statistics.

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.