Shisha users across the borough are being warned that they could be risking a fine, as well as their health, if they use shisha in enclosed public places.
The council is reminding people that the ban on smoking cigarettes in bars also applies to shisha and those who break it could be handed a £50 fixed penalty notice.
Owners of shisha bars which don’t comply with the law could also be hit with a fine of up to £2,500 as well as any investigation costs incurred by the council.
The warning comes after Department of Health statistics revealed that users of shisha inhale as much smoke in one shisha session as they would if they had smoked 100 cigarettes.
The sweet fruity smell of shisha masks a range of nasty ingredients including tobacco in many cases and carbon monoxide, which puts users at risk of lung, mouth and bladder cancer. Pregnant women can also put their unborn babies at risk of respiratory diseases if they use shisha while expecting.
Second hand smoke from shisha also poses a risk to non users, while the sharing of mouthpieces can pass infections around.
Councillor Jacqui Beswick, Cabinet Member for Licensing and Regulatory Services at Rochdale Borough Council, said: “Lots of people are aware of the rules around smoking in public places but many don’t realise that all the same restrictions apply to shisha because it is just as dangerous as cigarettes.
“Our public protection team regularly carry out unannounced inspections on shisha bars to ensure they are complying with the law but we also rely on members of the public to be our eyes and ears. Anyone with information on shisha bars which may be permitting smoking indoors should contact Gary Parkinson on firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 0845 121 2971.”
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