In Switzerland, SBB (Federal Railways) is planning to ban smoke in all 2018 terminals. A decision hailed by the health community. Switzerland would follow the trend of its European neighbors.
Some still light one last cigarette before getting on the train. A gesture that is likely to disappear. In a document published Wednesday by the NZZ, SBB is presenting a pilot project to test non-smoking areas in several stations. In Nyon, Basel, and Zurich Stadelhofen, the smoke will be completely banned. In Bellinzona, only the stoop will be accessible to smokers. As for Neuchâtel, "lounges" developed in collaboration with Swiss Cigarette should welcome users in need of nicotine. After this twelve-month test phase, SBB will decide whether to ban smoke in all Swiss railway stations.
«This test phase of expanded smoke-free areas will begin during the 2018 year. In all, 5 or 6 stations should be concernedSays the CFF spokesman, Fred Revaz. The implementation plan and the specific areas subject to the ban remain to be defined.
The health community is very much in favor of this effort to reduce passive smoke. However, they do not wish to lay the stone to the main concerned: smokers. "We support the creation of areas that will be reserved for them. These spaces should be well ventilated and kept away from the non-smoking area.»Develops Elena Strozzi, from the Swiss Lung Association.
According to the latter, this initiative has the advantage ofdenormalizing smoke in the public space". As to whether the reluctance of some smokers is likely to to jeopardize the project, she recalls that in 2005, the decision to ban train smoke hadwas finally well accepted».
Swiss Cigarette, which groups together several tobacco companies, wishes on the contrary that adult smokers retain the possibility of consuming tobacco products. "Open air stations are particularly suitable spaces", mentionned Thomas Meyer, the general secretary of Swiss Cigarette. Nevertheless, no details were given as to the creation of smoking lounges.
The smoker's compromise, Jean-Paul Humair, director of CIPRET (tobacco prevention), does not believe for a moment: "it is an aberration of public health because the smoke spreads around, and thus does not prevent passive exposure to smoke". The HUG doctor favors a total ban on smoking in public places. He explains that the majority of the population supports this kind of measures, "Including a large portion of smokers, many of whom want to quit smoking».
By totally banishing smoke from railway stations, Switzerland would be lining up with its European neighbors: France, Italy, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium and Spain. SBB will still have to put in place a system to enforce this measure. In 2005, while the smoking cars disappeared, fines of 25 francs were imposed on recalcitrant users.
At present, travelers who light a cigarette, a cigar, or an e-cigarette outside the dedicated areas risk a simple reminder to station staff.
source : Letemps.ch