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     FrontPage Edition: Sat 1 July 2006

Smoking ban in eating places starts today


Smoking ban in eating places starts this weekend
Food outlets such as hawker centres, coffeeshops, cafes and fast food restaurants will be smoke-free from 1st July. To protect patrons from second-hand smoke, smokers are reminded to light up only at designated smoking corners.
Under this new regulation, smoking is banned within the indoor refreshment areas (IRA) of all foodshops (Eg. Coffeeshops, Cafes, Restaurants). They can designate up to 20% of the floor area in their outdoor refreshment areas (ORA) as a smoking corner upon NEA¡¯s approval.
Hawker centres may likewise set aside up to 20% of the seating capacity in the ORA as a smoking corner. However, hawker centres that do not have ORA can designate up to 10% of the seating capacity of their IRA as a smoking corner.
Since the announcement of the ban in August last year, NEA has sent letters and guidelines, and visited foodshops to explain to the operators on the implementation of the ban.
Operators were advised to demarcate the smoking areas/corners clearly so as to avoid any confusion among the patrons. These include prominent display of signages on the smoking ban, physical/visible partitions, coloured tables, etc.
No smoking is allowed in foodshops that have yet to apply for a smoking corner in their ORA.
Operators who subsequently wish to set up a smoking corner can apply for one at any time, subject to NEA¡¯s approval. They can contact the NEA Call Centre at 1800-CALL-NEA (1800-2255 632). For hawker centres, 49 centres have decided to go smoke-free.
We urge members of the public to be considerate and abide by the ban. Operators are required to display ¡°No Smoking¡± signs prominently in their premises; and have the smoking corners, if any, clearly demarcated. Smokers are encouraged to cooperate with foodshop operators and play their part by using the smoking corners.
Members of the public can also provide us with feedback on smoking offences via the NEA Call Centre at 1800-CALL_NEA (1800-2255632) or

Source: News Release 29 Jun 2006

Related Articles:
Hawker centres, coffeeshops and cafes prepare for smoking ban
Smoking ban to cover more public places from 1 Oct 2005

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