I have heard a few radio adds about smoking not being allowed at outdoor restaurants in the ACT from 9th of December. As some one who has a quite severe reaction to cigarette smoke I see this as a good thing, because I’ll finally be able to sit outdoors and enjoy the sun instead of being cooped up in a restaurant avoiding smokers.
But how does it all work? I did a little Googling and found the ACT Health Website and read the fact sheet there.
It seems that licensed clubs and pubs can have outdoor smoking areas, just restaurants that primarily sell food can’t. Also, licensed pubs need to apply to have a DOSA. A Designated Outdoor Smoking Area. However, there are big fines for letting smoke from a DOSA to enter an outdoor eating or drinking area.
But how is this going to work in reality? Say I decide to head down to the local pub to enjoy a fine steak, a bit of live music and to chat with me mates outside on the porch. I’m there eating my steak and salad and from the table next door over wafts some smoke. So I say “Excuse me good sir, would you mine please putting out your cigarette. Your smoke from the DOSA is entering my eating area.” To which they reply “Go get stuffed” and I suddenly find myself wearing a glass attachment to my forehead.
My personal experience is that on almost all occasions that I have politely asked a smoker to put out their cigarette they refuse to do so, even when directly seated underneath a 3 foot wide no smoking sign, or in clearly designated no smoking areas. I get anything from “F off” to “It’s my right to smoke” (I guess this negates my right to breathe) to people who just ignore me and go on smoking.