Smokers caught lighting up at all outdoor organised sports events in New South Wales may incur a $300 on-the-spot fine, but the law does not require signs warning of the penalty.
NSW Sport and Recreation Minister Stuart Ayres said the smoking bans protect everyone from harmful second-hand smoke.
“Families and children make up a large part of sporting crowds and for children in particular, inhaling second-hand smoke is even more dangerous because their airways are smaller and their immune systems less developed,’’ Mr Ayres said.
The move has been welcomed by Member for Vaucluse and former Sport and Recreation Minister Gabrielle Upton.
“I wholeheartedly support the campaign by NSW Health to create smoke-free outdoor areas like sports grounds and recreational areas, and make smoking less visible to children and young people,” Ms Upton said.
“We can all do our part to make our community a healthier place and I urge everyone to follow the rules when attending sporting events this weekend.”
Waverley Council supports the legislation, which followed moves from the authority to ban smoking in all public areas including footpaths and cafes with outdoor seating.
Councillor Leon Goltsman said legislation ‘’takes what we have done to another level.
‘’Sports grounds are about people being healthy. Allowing smoking near football fields is like having a case of beer and then driving home.”
Cr Goltsman, who championed the council’s anti-smoking provisions, said Waverley residents who may smoke are not being dealt a double blow by state and council restrictions.
“Smoking bans protect children, families and non-smokers. If people want to smoke they can do it at home.”