Q&A: Will I be prosecuted if under-16s use my cigarette vending machine?

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Related tags: Cigarette vending machine, Tobacco, Nicotine

I have a cigarette vending machine in my pub and am concerned that children under the age of 16 may be using this to purchase cigarettes. What action...

I have a cigarette vending machine in my pub and am concerned that children under the age of 16 may be using this to purchase cigarettes. What action are the police likely to take if they find that this has happened?

If the police have proof that the machine is being used by children under the age of 16 then this may result in a criminal prosecution being brought against you.

In such event the court may impose a fine of up to £2,500 and has the power to order the removal of the machine. Importantly, it would not be a defence that the purchaser looked older than 16.

It is obviously wise to place the machine where members of staff can keep a close eye on it. Signs should also be displayed in the pub and on the machine. The notice on the machine must measure no less than 6 cm x 10 cm and must state: "This machine is only for the use of people aged 16 or over".

Furthermore, a sign must be displayed at the point of sale in a visible position stating: "It is illegal to sell tobacco products to anyone under the age of 16".

Related topics: Health & safety

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