Smoking in outdoor dining areas is now banned in Victoria.
The aim of smoke-free outdoor dining is to protect the community from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke and to de-normalise smoking behaviours which is particularly important for discouraging children from taking up smoking.
It also helps support people who have recently quit smoking or who are trying to quit by removing smoking visual cues and triggers.
The introduction of smoke free outdoor dining means there are two types of outdoor areas:
- outdoor dining or
- outdoor drinking area.
All outdoor drinking areas must be separated from outdoor dining areas by either a four metre buffer zone or a wall at least 2.1 metres high.
It is important to remember that if you have an outdoor dining area, in which food is permitted to be eaten at all times, this area must remain smoke free at all times, even if no one is eating in the area.
Food businesses have been advised of these changes.
Smoke-free outdoor dining factsheets are available from the Department of Health website.
Current no smoking signs can be used for the new bans in outdoor dining, however additional signage may be required. Business owners and managers can contact us for these signs or go to the Department of Healthwebsite.
All existing smoking restrictions continue to apply - refer to our Tobacco information for businesses page for this information.
More information can be obtained from the Tobacco Reforms webpage or call Tobacco Information Line on 1300 136 775.