20 caught puffing on ferries, airport and heritage zone


GEORGE TOWN: Two ferry crew members smoking on board their vessels were among 20 people caught smoking in Penang by state Health Department enforcers during an anti-smoking operation.

The others, including foreigners, were caught smoking in the ferry and bus terminals, the airport and the George Town heritage enclave.

The two local ferry men were caught smoking on board a ferry at the terminal in Weld Quay here during the raid codenamed Ops Penang Sihat.

Penang Health Department Inspectorate and Legal head Ong Ang Guan said it was the third Ops Penang Sihat this year.

He said a total of 20 compounds totalling RM5,000 for smoking in no-smoking zones were issued at press time yesterday.

Of that, Ong said, three compounds were issued to foreigners on the ferries and in the bus terminal.

“Another seven compounds were issued at Penang International Airport. Three of those were issued to foreigners.

“Two compounds were issued at the George Town heritage enclave, which is as a smoke-free area under the Smoke-Free Penang initiative,” he said yesterday.

Ong added that the raid yesterday involved two groups of enforcers from all five district health offices and the international health office of the state Health Department.

He said the first group, comprising 47 personnel, went on the raid between 8am and 4.30pm, while the second group of 54 continued the raid between 5.30pm and 10pm yesterday.

Ong told reporters that the operation covered several areas under the Control of Tobacco Product Regulations 2004, namely the ferries, ferry and bus terminals, airport and heritage areas.

He said compounds of RM250 were issued to each offender.

“We will give them a month to pay the compound.

“If they fail to pay, they will be charged in court and face a maximum fine of RM10,000 or two years’ jail.

“The foreigners were instructed to pay the compounds immediately,” he said.