New electronic cigarette laws will protect bystanders from passive exposure to vapour.
From July 2018, people cannot vape where they are not allowed to smoke traditional cigarettes. People who vape in smoke-free areas will risk fines of up to $550.
E-cigarette retailers will also be required to notify NSW Health that they are selling such products, as tobacco retailers are already required to do.
The new laws bring NSW into line with those in Queensland, Victoria, Tasmania and the ACT.
Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the new laws do not ban people from using e-cigarettes, but bring rules around vaping into line with other forms of smoking.
“Put simply, where you are not allowed to smoke cigarettes, you now cannot vape either,” Mr Hazzard said.
NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said there is evidence of potential health risks from e-cigarette vapours, even when there is no illegal nicotine in the e-liquid.
“E-cigarette vapours can contain chemicals, toxins and metals, and some of these substances, like formaldehyde, are already known to cause cancer,” Dr Chant said.
“The National Health and Medical Research Council states e-cigarettes expose both users and bystanders to very small particles which may worsen existing illnesses or increase the risk of developing cardiovascular or respiratory disease.”
The Therapeutic Goods Administration has not approved any e-cigarette product as an aid to help with quitting smoking.