This week has seen a number of sensational headlines, warning that vaping while driving could land you a £2,500 fine and a driving ban. It could therefore be sensible to conclude that some new legislation has been passed banning vaping whilst driving, but this is not the case.
The reality is that no new laws have been passed. Sergeant Carl Knapp of the Sussex Roads Policing Unit said this week: “There are no laws prohibiting vaping, however, you need to be in full and proper control of your vehicle at all times. If you are going to vape, I advise that you open your windows and blow the vapour directly out, just ensure that you are in full control of your vehicle before doing so.”
References to potential fines and penalties are assumed to be related to existing guidance on prosecutions of drivers, driving without due care and attention.
It is regrettable that most vaping related news stories are so often misreported or misrepresented, and have the potential to cause alarm among vapers and the public and, more generally, continue the pejorative subliminal messaging that media apparently seems so invested in associating to vaping’s enormous success and contribution to society. Let’s remember that vaping exists because and only because of smoking. Smoking not only takes the early life of one in every two of its users, but is currently still deemed legal to be undertaken whilst in control of a vehicle.