Ecig Causes Scandal in the UK
Date Posted: August 21, 2013
There’s a bit of ambivalence in the United Kingdom, regarding electronic cigarettes… Should public service professionals be allowed to take a vape break instead of a smoke break?
The controversy surrounding vaping in public places continues, as law enforcement officers in the UK get the go-ahead to enjoy their ecigs on duty, while out of the publics’ eye. On the other hand, a British tram driver was enjoying her ecig behind the wheel, when a passenger “caught” her on camera. The troubled passenger reported the incident to Metrolink, stating that “There should be policy on this.”
Metrolink is one of the largest public transportation systems in the UK. In response to the “concerned” passenger, Marie Daly, of Human Resources at Metrolink, said, “We have taken the steps to develop rules and procedures … which stipulate that e-cigarettes should only be used in designated areas. Given the ambiguity around the topic of e-cigarettes we will review any issues on a case-by-case basis.”
Daly added that, “In the case of one of our drivers using an e-cigarette, we have spoken to the driver in question to ensure their understanding of our position regarding this subject.” It sounds to us like Metrolink’s position on ecigs is ambiguous as well… Thankfully, it seems that Metrolink executives acknowledge that the benefits of ecigs could outweigh any potential disadvantages. They haven’t issued any official regulations yet.
What about the British law enforcement?
Police in Cambridgeshire can now vape away, as long as there isn’t a public audience. The days of those alluring, hazy, vaporous rooms filled with stressed out officers, desks and too much paperwork are upon us again – at least in Cambridgeshire, thanks to the force’s constabulary.
After a constabulary meeting on July 2nd, a police spokesman said, “Following discussion which considered both pros and cons of both visibility and health it was agreed that use of electronic cigarettes would be permitted on police premises although not in front facing areas such as enquiry offices.”
The internal conflict over regulating ecigs within the Cambridgeshire Constabulary was between the force executive board (FEB) and the People Board. They went head-to-head during the meeting – in the end, the FEB had the final say, as shown in the minutes from the official meeting. Here’s what the minutes stated:
“5.4.9 E-cigarettes – the People Board requested that FEB reconsider the decision to allow the use of E-cigarettes following the announcement that these were unregulated and produced some slight release of chemicals. Following discussion the decision to allow the use of Ecigarettes was upheld.” Sounds like they’re on the right track!
Amongst adversity, officials from both Metrolink and the Cambridgeshire Constabulary remain open to the use of ecigs. Although the driver of the Metrolink tram was “spoken to”, the rest of the evidence suggests that her employers aren’t too concerned about the situation.
Looks like another global win for the electronic cigarette industry! Cheers!