It’s either one of the greatest laws ever written or one of the most pointless.
The ban on smoking in cars with children present came in last October.
A year on and only one person in the whole of Britain has been fined for flouting it.
They may end up being the only person ever to be fined for the offence. They should put it on their CV.
Either we have produced a law which has offenders on the run or we’ve produced a law in which the authorities do little about catching the errant puffers.
The truth probably lies somewhere in between the two.
There are few who would argue it’s in the best interest of children to have people smoking next to them in confined spaces.
But then there are also few who would argue that it is a valuable use of police time to track down offenders and slap them with fines. I can’t help feeling this law has come into being, not because of overwhelming public demand, but because it ticks the right boxes with certain health campaigners.
But once brought into being, with little opposition, it has become instantly irrelevant.
A law which few break, and even fewer pursue through the courts.
Smokers for the large part, don’t smoke near their children to begin with, let alone while they are in a car.
And the police certainly have more pressing concerns than targeting smokers and even less inclination to create more paperwork dishing out fines.
The law is well meaning, but ultimately underwhelming.
There are about 10 million smokers in the UK ... and only one them has been fined for this offence. That alone speaks volumes. Ill-thought out and wasteful. Honestly, where did they draw this legislation up? On the back of a fag packet?