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| 17 October, 2017

Dubai tightens ban on electronic cigarette smoking in shopping malls

Image used for illustrative purpose. Charly Pairaud, deputy director of VDLV ("Vincent dans les Vapes") e-liquids maker, demonstrates the use of an electronic cigarette in his factory in Pessac near Bordeaux October 9, 2013. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

Image used for illustrative purpose. Charly Pairaud, deputy director of VDLV ("Vincent dans les Vapes") e-liquids maker, demonstrates the use of an electronic cigarette in his factory in Pessac near Bordeaux October 9, 2013. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

Shopping centres and malls have been directed to encourage their security personnel to treat people in a polite manner

DUBAI - Dubai Municipality has emphasised its seriousness in implementing a ban on electronic cigarette smoking in public places and shopping malls, both indoors and at the entrances of the malls.

"The municipality has noticed that there are some shopping centres that allow violations of the indoor smoking ban, especially so-called electronic cigarettes, and allow smoking at the entrances of shopping centres," said Redha Salman, Director of Public Health and Safety Department in the municipality.

"Shopping centres and malls have been directed to encourage their security personnel to treat people in a polite manner and to put signs and warnings on the entrances. In the case of people repeating these practices, the security officer has the right to resort to the police to take the necessary measures," said Salman.

He said that the decision in 2009 to ban smoking in public places also includes electronic cigarettes and smoking at the entrances of shopping centres, as well as indoor areas.

Khater Al Nuaimi, Director of Customer Relations and Partners Department in Dubai Municipality, recently organised a meeting with a group of officials from shopping centres in the emirate to discuss customer complaints about the electronic cigarettes smoking phenomena in shopping centres.

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Al Nuaimi said that the meeting was planned by the municipality to be a "mini-Majlis" for exchanging experiences between the government department and private sector companies, to discuss the smoking issue and how it affects public life. He said that the main objective of the meeting was to protect public health and implement the law issued by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Al Nuaimi said that the public meetings aim to achieve greater transparency between officials and the general public, and also work to achieve the happiness of the community as desired by Dubai.

During the meeting, Salman also reiterated the conditions, specifications and requirements of safety of escalators within the framework of the municipality's keenness to implement the highest safety standards in accordance with international best practices to ensure a safe environment for people in all public places.

He called on all those working in buildings, shopping centres and markets to ensure the safety of escalators by installing covers to protect the upper conveyor belt and provide protection to reduce accidents.

"The municipality hopes to get full commitment and contribution from all in implementing Local Order No. 11 of 2003 on Public Health and Community Safety in the Emirate of Dubai. We urge people not to violate local orders and risk fines, punishments and legal procedures," added Salman.

© Copyright Emirates News Agency (WAM) 2017.