Fewer pubs, restaurants fined for violating smoking ban

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The Dutch food and consumer product safety authority NVWA did fewer inspections to make sure that pubs, restaurants and hotels are enforcing the smoking ban. Fewer fines were also issued, according to figures NU.nl received from the NVWA.

In 2015 the NVWA performed 21,723 such inspections, compared to 22,862 in 2014. Last year 1,368 fines were issued, totaling in an amount of 1,156,200 euros. And 809 establishments were given a written warning. According to NU, the number of fines decreased, but the number of warnings increased.

The smoking ban was implemented on July 1st, 2008. The NVWA mainly inspect pubs, hotels and restaurants where the risk of infringement is the greatest, for example pubs where the owner previously violated the ban. The amount of the fine depends on how many times the owner violated the ban - the first fan is 600 euros and each following fan is a higher amount. The fines can run up to a maximum of 4,500 euros per violation.

Adjusted to population size, the hospitality industry in Urk received the most fines with 35 issued per 100 establishments. By the number of fines issued, Amsterdam received the most with 156, followed by Rotterdam with 145 and The Hague with 114 fines.