Smoke-free car crusaders

Wigan Council Professor Kate Ardern and Councillor Keith Cunliffe, portfolio holder for health and adult social care, with the car
Wigan Council Professor Kate Ardern and Councillor Keith Cunliffe, portfolio holder for health and adult social care, with the car
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A HARD-hitting campaign to reinforce the dangers of smoking in cars with children present has hit Wigan town centre.

Shoppers were stopped in their tracks by the car which featured a design to show the true impact of smoking in a confined space with children in a car would have on young people.

And there were checks testing people’s lung health and advice for people who wanted to quit smoking this Stoptober.

On October 1 new legislation was brought in which means it is now against the law to smoke in a car with someone aged under 18 present and anyone who does could face a fine.

Second hand smoke from cigarettes is dangerous and can be responsible for a range of health problems including bronchitis, asthma and glue ear, and is especially dangerous to children.

The campaign has been backed by health bosses at Wigan Council.

Coun Keith Cunliffe, portfolio holder for health and adult social care at Wigan Council, said: “It can be extremely damaging smoking in a car with a young child in there because their lungs are developing and the amount of smoke in there can be up to 11 times the level in a normal room so the second hand smoke can be extremely harmful.

“It can lead to asthma and all kinds of problems in later life so actually not smoking in a car is thinking about your own child’s health.”

Prof Kate Ardern, the local authority’s director of public health, added: “We are strongly supporting the introduction of smoke-free cars to protect the health of our children and young people. We spend a lot of our time in our cars and so do children.

“It’s really important their journeys are tobacco free and the air they breathe in is healthy and clean so please support and encourage people to adhere to the smoke free legislation which means we will hopefully make tobacco history for our children.”

For more information on stop smoking services across the borough go to the website www.wigan.gov.
uk.