Forum: Put tougher anti-smoking measures in place, do more to enforce rules

Tobacco-caused diseases kill more than 2,200 people in Singapore every year, according to The Tobacco Atlas.

Second-hand smoke, which has more than 4,000 irritants, toxins and cancer-causing substances, is also deadly, killing more than 300 non-smokers every year.

But I do not see any real gumption in enforcing "no smoking" rules.

Everywhere you go, you cannot avoid walking through second-hand smoke - at traffic lights when you are waiting to cross, during walks, and when you visit a coffee shop.

Many coffee shops have demarcated dining areas for smokers, but little can be done to prevent the smoke from wafting over to other diners seated in non-smoking areas.

Recently, I wrote in to the PUB about a smoking-related incident that occurred at MacRitchie Reservoir Park's pickup point.

I was surprised to learn from its reply that the park is targeted to be gazetted as a non-smoking park by this June.

I had presumed that all parks where people gather for recreation or exercise were smoke-free.

Why does gazetting a nature park to be smoke-free need to be such a gradual process?

It is already so stifling to wear a mask every day. And yet when we get the chance to remove it to exercise, we have to deal with second-hand smoke.

I hope that tougher anti-smoking measures will be instituted so that we all can have cleaner air to breathe. It is our right.

Mahinder Singh