ProRail wants to ban smoking at all Netherlands train stations

People smoking on a platform at Amsterdam Amstel Station, 8 Feb 2018
People smoking on a platform at Amsterdam Amstel Station, 8 Feb 2018Photo: Zachary Newmark / NL Times

ProRail wants to ban smoking at all train stations in the Netherlands. If the rail manager has its way, all smoking zones will disappear at the some 400 stations within the next two years, a spokesperson said to the Telegraaf.

ProRail receives many complaints from travelers who are bothered by smokers, the spokesperson said. The company therefore does not want to wait for a national smoking ban. "That's why we take the lead ourselves." The rail manager is currently working on convincing all parties involved to support the plan.

The Telegraaf spoke to some of the parties involved and found that travelers' association Rover supports the plan. So do the Ministries of Public Health, Welfare and Sports and Infrastructure and Water Management. NS is not against a complete ban on smoking, but stressed that there must be enough support for it. Trade union FNV wants to make sure that train drivers and conductors can still smoke if they want to. ProRail is willing to create smoking facilities for them somewhere no travelers go, according to the newspaper.

As rail manager, ProRail is responsible for the design and house rules at the Dutch train stations. Rail company NS is responsible for their facilities, such a shops and bathrooms. 

Earlier this week anti-smoking organization Clean Air Nederland announced that smoking is banned on more and more terraces in the Netherlands. Though the vast majority still allows smoking. No smoking is allowed at 113 of the thousands of terraces in the Netherlands.