Drivers should be banned from smoking in cars when children are travelling with them, according to a new survey.
The YouGov poll for the UK Faculty of Public Health (FPH) revealed that 74% of the British public supported a ban on anyone smoking in a car with children on board.
Statistics show that each year there are 300,000 doctor appointments and 9500 hospital admissions caused by the effects of smoke on children. It also says that second-hand smoke in a car is 27 times more toxic than in a smoker's home, and 60 times more poisonous than in a non-smoker's home.
The FPH points out how seatbelt legislation has changed attitudes towards safety and says a ban on smoking in cars with children on board could follow along similar lines.
Rachael Jolley, FPH's head of policy, said of the poll: 'It shows that the British want stronger Government action when it comes to issues such as smoking. Personal responsibility is important, but the British public seems to be overwhelmingly of the opinion that state intervention has its part to play, too.'
The FPH's findings follow last week's controversial remarks from Professor Steve Field, chairman of the Royal College of General Practitioners, who said that parents who smoked in front of their young children were 'committing a form of child abuse'.
The poll also found that 49% of respondents wanted to reduce speed limits from 30mph to 20mph in built-up areas.