Over half of motorists would welcome a ban on smoking behind the wheel, according to a survey conducted by the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM).
Drivers are clearly concerned with the attentiveness of smokers behind the wheel, with 75 per cent of respondents stating that they consider smoking while driving to be a serious distraction.
Just two percent of drivers felt that smoking while driving presented no danger whatsoever.
The survey shows that overall, motorists have a negative opinion of smoking while driving, with nearly half considering it to be irresponsible and over 40 per cent considering it to be as dangerous as driving while using a mobile phone.
Unlike using a mobile phone at the wheel, which is a specific offence with its own penalty, smoking at the wheel is ranked alongside eating while driving – a legal grey area where a police officer would have to prove a loss of concentration at the wheel to bring a charge of driving without due care and attention.
IAM chief executive Simon Best said: “Smoking is clearly seen as a serious issue by motorists and highlights the impact of distractions in the car.
“The health benefits may be clear but more research needs to be done to determine whether there are actual road safety grounds to act on these concerns by banning smoking and driving altogether.”
So, what do you think? Should smoking while driving be banned? Or should the powers that be stop trying to nanny motorists by dictating what is safe to do while driving? Have your say below.
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