Smoke 'em if you got 'em, Montrealers, because Quebec's new slew of smoking laws come into effect this Thursday, and once they do, you won't be able to liberally light up like you used to.
Popularly known as the "terrasse smoking ban," the province's soon-to-be enforced set of regulations will actually involve far more than just patios.
For example, the anti-smoking act, which aims to mitigate second hand smoke in general, will make smoking a cigarette close to a window or door (nine metres, to be precise) a criminal offence. Previously this wasn't the case.
The many regulations that make up Quebec's new smoking laws won't come at us all at once, explains CBC, as rules will roll out every couple of months all the way 'til November 2017. So until then, be wary of what laws are in effect and which aren't.
Photo cred - @maliha_hossain
And you'll definitely want to be aware of what laws you may be breaking in the coming months, because if you're caught smoking where shouldn't be, you will get slapped with a fine. $250-$750 is the new standard for first-time smoking offenders, with $500-$1500 the going rate for repeat offenders.
Just so you're in the loop, and entirely prepared for the many changes that will face all smokers living in Quebec, here are all the places where smoking will be prohibited:
- All commercial terrasses (restaurants + bars)
- Any car when there is an individual younger than 16 inside
- Near any sort of public educational institution (daycares, preschools, elementary schools, etc.)
- The common areas of residential building with anywhere from 2-5 units
- Playgrounds, sports fields, or any public recreational facility
To be honest, most of the new smoking laws make a lot of sense, and it's surprising many of them (like smoking near schools or playgrounds) weren't already a thing.
Still, most people are mighty riled up by the terrasse-ban, and understandably so, but you still have time to enjoy the experience! Thursday is two days away, so get on Montreal's best terrasses, light up a cigarette, and take in the feeling while you can.