Love to vape and drive? From eating your favourite Indian takeaway to plucking your eyebrows, there are a whole host of incredible things that people do while driving. But what about vaping in your car? Is it legal to do so, and what are the dangers posed should you choose to do so? Let’s get the lowdown on vaping laws and how to ensure you avoid getting into any unnecessary trouble with the authorities.
Is Vaping Illegal in Cars in the UK?
The good news that if you love to vape while behind the wheel, then you’ll be pleased to know that vaping and driving is not illegal. Not technically anyway. What’s important here is how you vape in the car and how any potential excessive vapour clouds may impair your ability to see any impending dangers that may or may not lie in wait.
In fact, should you be found to have excessive vapour pouring from your car window, police officers have the power to prosecute you for driving without due care and attention. Punishments for such an offence can start from £100 on the spot fine and three points added to your license if the officer in question believes that your actions are affecting your ability to operate your car safely. In more severe instances that are contested in a court, offenders could be slapped with a whopping £5000 fine, a potential nine points added to your license and even the possibility of a court-imposed driving ban. Wowzers.
If you want our advice, we would suggest sticking to a device that doesn’t bellow out plumes of vapour and to stay vigilant when you vape and drive.
Is it Safe to Vape and Drive?
While it’s not illegal to vape and drive, it is essential to ensure you and other road users are safe from any potential dangers that vaping and driving poses. How secure you are when you vape and drive will, of course, primarily be your responsibility, but can we do to ensure you are as safe as possible and whether it is safe to vape and drive at all?
Anything that deters your attention from your responsibility on the road is a hazard. Whether it is checking your phone’s notifications or switching radio stations at high speed, ultimately the driving bit is the most important thing here. Devices that require firing up, or choosing a particular favourite mode should ultimately be avoided on the road. Even if you believe that you can switch coils and refill an e-liquid tank blindfolded, choosing to do so on the road is a big, fat, emphatic no.
The safest device to use in the car is one that is draw-activated, meaning that you won’t have to pay any attention to switching a device on or choosing a specific function. Simple vaporisers such as the e-cigarette style devices provided in Starter Vape Kits are probably the safest way to vape Ensure your device is fully charged and e-liquid tank sufficiently filled before setting off. If you’re on a long journey and are in danger of running low on both battery and e-liquid, do the right thing and pull over before deciding to recharge or refill.
Can You Vape with Kids in the Car?
In 2015 it became illegal to smoke cigarettes in the car if anyone under 18 was present. Preventing the harm that second-cigarette smoke causes to passive and non-smokers, a question that is often asked is whether second-hand vapour poses a similar risk? If you didn’t already know, e-cigarettes can be up to 95% less harmful than smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes, meaning that the potential harm a vaper faces, is significantly reduced. The long term effects of second-hand vapour are yet to be discovered; however, the consensus is that any potential harm posed to innocent bystanders' health is relatively low.
While the use of e-cigarettes in cars with persons under-18 present is legal and okay, respecting the wishes of those sharing the occupancy of the vehicle at the time should be a priority for you as a vaper.