Taipei to ban smoking outside convenience stores, coffee chains
Taipei, Aug. 19 (CNA) Taipei will ban smoking on covered walkways outside several convenience store and coffee shop chains beginning Sept. 1, the city's Department of Health (DOH) said Monday.
Stores covered by the ban are those belonging to the following chains: 7-Eleven, FamilyMart, Hi-Life, OK Mart, Simple Mart, Starbucks, 85°C Bakery Cafe, Louisa Coffee, Mr. Brown Café, Dante Coffee, Ikari Coffee, Barista Coffee, Cama Café, Crown & Fancy, and Peter Better Café.
Taipei Health Commissioner Huang Shier-chieh (黃世傑) warned that anyone caught smoking on these covered walkways in front of shops of these 15 chains will be subject to fines ranging between NT$2,000 and NT$10,000 (US$319).
The rule will not apply to open sidewalks or areas outside of these stores (that are not covered by an overhang of the building) or outside of stores on the second floor of a building or higher, Huang said.
Ikari Coffee General Manager Sun Li-chiang (孫立強) expressed support for the ban.
"Now there will be a reason for us to discourage people from smoking on covered walkways outside our shops," he said.
Hsu Hung-wen (許鴻文), a manager at Hi-Life, echoed Sun's support, saying some of its customers occasionally complain about having to put up with secondhand smoke when exiting its stores after making a purchase.
According to Huang, smoking has been banned across 2,569 locations throughout Taipei, including parks, bus shelters, and other public areas, as of the end of July.
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