SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – Groningen has become the first city in the Netherlands to ban smoking on the street in some areas. City councillors, apart from the VVD and the Socialists, voted in favour of the plan on Wednesday night.
The smoke-free zones will be located close to buildings where bans had been requested, including the university, the UMCG teaching hospital, schools, daycare centres and theatres, RTV Noord reported.
In total, some 30 institutions have requested a no-smoking zone. People who do light up a cigarette in the smoke-free zones will be committing an offence but will not face fines, alderman Mattias Gijsbertsen told RTV Noord.
Instead, people should point out to each other that smoking is banned within the given space, Gijsbertsen said.
In August it emerged that Rotterdam planned to ban smoking on two streets which are shared by the Erasmus Medical Centre, the Erasmiaans Gymnasium school and the Hogeschool Rotterdam college.
Amstelveen has also introduced a potential to ban smoking on some streets in its byelaws, Tom Voeten of anti-smoking organisation Clean Air Now said last month. (DutchNews)