Smokers have been warned they could face fines for lighting up in their car.

Although it is not illegal to smoke while driving your car, there are occasions when doing so could hit you in the pocket.

This is everything you need to know around the laws of smoking and driving.

Is it illegal to smoke and drive?

The Highway Code doesn’t name smoking and driving as a specific offence, in the same way it does not name activities like changing a CD, reading a map or eating.

However, the AA warn that smoking while driving and ending up in an accident could put you in a sticky situation.

They explain: “Coupled with bad driving, or if they lead to an accident, any of these behaviours could result in a charge of careless driving, or not being in a position to control the vehicle.

“They can also be used to show dangerous driving, an offence which could lead to imprisonment, particularly if the dangerous driving causes a death.

“Rule 148 of the Highway Code includes smoking as one of a number of distractions to be avoided when driving or riding:

  • Loud music (this may mask other sounds)
  • Trying to read maps
  • Inserting a cassette or CD or tuning a radio
  • Arguing with your passengers or other road users
  • Eating and drinking
  • Smoking”

Is it illegal to smoke with children in the car?

Smoking with a child in a private vehicle is illegal according to the Children and Families Act 2015.

The Act also means it is illegal to allow smoking in a private vehicle while a child is present, even if you are not the person smoking.

The AA explains: “The law doesn't apply to a convertible car with the roof completely down but does apply to all vehicles 'wholly or partly enclosed by a roof', and still applies:

  • If you have windows or a sunroof open.
  • If you have the air conditioning on.
  • If you sit in the open doorway of the vehicle.

“The rules don't apply to e-cigarettes.”

Failing to prevent smoking in a smoke-free private vehicle in England and Wales risks a fixed penalty notice of £50.