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Smokers face tighter rules as Tokyo eyes smoke-free Olympics

By Elaine Lies

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Japanese smokers are the most inconsiderate as well. Local towns should impose actual fines. Many roads are labeled with no smoking signs but smokers feel that is an invitation to smoke.

Maybe some Jcops could walk up and down some main streets rather than stand in front of their kobans and drive around flashing their sirens randomly.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

the health impact is our main priority

Then don't wait for 2020, do it now - nationwide.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

You know, if they banned convenience stores from selling cigarettes and got rid of the vending machines, smokers would HAVE to go to a tabacco shop like in the old days or buy them from the supermarket. Slap a 1000 yen tax on top of that for every pack and you will see the number of smokers drop drastically.

But even if you want to quit, its got to be super hard when every conbini and every street has a million vending machines that sell them. Less accessability and more taxes.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

The banned smoking on train platforms over ten years ago, but I still see butts on the platforms. They banned smoking on streets ten years ago, but there are still butts everywhere. They banned smoking in schools and government offices, but many schools and offices still have smoking rooms. It's all well and good to set up these 'rules', but without penalties they are just guidelines. They state that, less than 25% of people are still smoking in Japan, but from what I see in and around Tokyo this number must be fudged.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

There has been a stronger movement towards rules like these, and it's about time.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

So they should its not Healthy and The olympics is supposed to promote healthy bodies

5 ( +6 / -1 )

There is no escape from the fact that tobacco is a social blight and it's days are numbered as an "activity". Those holding onto it with their last gasps just haven't seen the light through the smoke yet. Or they have and are hell bent on self-destruction and willingly are taking others near and dear to them along for the ride.

Ban it yesterday.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Please note, the article states 'rules', not 'laws'. In other words, they are just guidelines with no penalties that will be ignored.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

**The(y) banned smoking on train platforms over ten years ago, but I still see butts on the platforms.***

Yes, but think back how horrible it was before the ban. Remember those Shinkansen that used to have a number of smoking cars? It was like entering Dante's inferno just to walk through one of them. I could never imagine actually sitting in one for the duration of a train ride.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Mr Sakuta is correct ! Japan suffers from many 3rd world inefficiencies such as open drains, substandard housing,congested inadequate public transportation,confusing road signage etc.The inability to enact legislation to protect people stems from the desire to place profit before health.Japanese doctors should be a major voice calling for a ban too. There is much resistance and lack of voices calling for change and that is one reason for Japan becoming more and more irrelevant in the 21st century.

3 ( +8 / -5 )


3 ( +3 / -0 )

I pray to god that it's not JUST for the Olympics, but knowing how the lip-service laws here work I think that once the Olympics is done it will revert to the way it is now.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It's unfair to say that Japan is at the level of developing countries. Most developing countries in Asia (Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Macao, China) are much cleaner inside their restaurants than Japan.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Yet again, it's 'gaiatsu' that forces Japan to progress.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Why drinking is good and smoking bad? My friend died of liver troubles resulting from drinking.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

the health impact is our main priority.

Which is why we waited 50 years just before the Tokyo Olympics to really crack down on it. Fifty years of cash for the government is nothing to sneeze at but now that the world is watching... It's the health impact! Yeah, that's the ticket.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Smokers can even light up on the grounds of schools and hospitals.

I am not sure this is true now, especially for public elementary and junior high schools. Teachers must leave the school grounds if they want to smoke in the city I work for. Also, I see many smokers outside of hospitals in Osaka, so I don't think you can smoke there either.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Fear not, at the last moment the glorious leader himself will urge smokers to refrain from the habit a bit for the two weeks or so of the Olympics. He might even vow to do this before urging.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

there are no punishments for non-compliance.

So what good are those rules?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Remember those Shinkansen that used to have a number of smoking cars?

They still do.

Even when I was a smoker that would have grossed me out to sit in one.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It's unfair to say that Japan is at the level of developing countries

I've been to a few 3rd world countries and many of them had serious smoking ban. No smoking allowed inside restaurants.

I bet a bottle of Mountain Dew that these "rules" will be lifted right after the Olympics are gone.

1 ( +1 / -0 )


Even when I was a smoker that would have grossed me out to sit in one.

Most smokers I see on the Shinkansen sit in the non-smoking car & then go to the smoking car only for as long as they have to. Which creates the dilemma that they bring their disgusting smell back with them into non-smoking.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I wish 'izakaya' also has a smoking free area. I like izakaya and I think it is one of a good place in Japan, but it is uncomfortable for non-smokers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

“The situation for preventing passive smoking in Japan is on a level with that in a developing nation

VERY true.

According to the World Health Organization, Japan’s measures to prevent passive smoking are among the world’s worst


“Of course, this isn’t the only reason, the health impact is our main priority.”

Oh yeah. Of course. We believe you..pft

0 ( +3 / -3 )

7.9% of women smoke.

Bull. If this is true, then for some reason they all live near me.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Second-hand smoke is something I've had to get used to here. The worst is company nomikai--everyone lights up right away and I have to wash all my clothes, jacket, hair, etc. as soon as I get home. So gross. I really really hate it and hope smoking inside any kind of building will be a thing of the past.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

An estimated 140,000 Japanese die every year from smoking-related diseases, including 15,000 who die from the effects of secondhand smoke, according to the health ministry.

In terms of passive smoking, here are at least 15,000 reasons to make it happen.


0 ( +0 / -0 )

'Bout time. We need laws, not rules. Either way, they will be ignored and unenforced !

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Then don't wait for 2020, do it now - nationwide.

But why? Za Olympikusu izu noto heru yetu desu ne! ;D

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

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