Rotterdam's street smoking ban put on hold

Cigarettes (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Kiwiev). (Cigarettes (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Kiwiev))

Rotterdam's plan to ban smoking on the streets around hospitals and schools has been placed on hold. Responsible alderman Sven de Langen of public health sees too few legal possibilities to enforce such a ban, NOS reports.

In August the Erasmus MC hospital, Hogeschool Rotterdam and the Erasmiaans Gymnasium said they want to ban smoking around their premises on Wytemaweg. De Langen then started investigating whether such a ban can be included in the municipality's local ordinance. 

Because of the lack of legal ground, he is now looking into a moral appeal. "Then people can be called not to smoke, for example with banners", he said, according to the broadcaster. 

The government released a National Prevention agreement last week which states that from 2020 onwards all school grounds, petting zoos, childcare facilities, 75 percent of playgrounds and 2,500 sports clubs must be smoke-free. Hospitals must be smoke-free from 2025. But the extent to which this includes the outdoor space is unclear.