Greeks are to a great extent observing a ban on public smoking that has been roundly flouted over the past decade, according to data from the country’s National Transparency Authority which put compliance rates at 84 percent.
The data was drawn from inspections carried out on 603 businesses across the country between October 25 and November 25.
Over the past week, inspectors recorded 11 violations by smoking citizens, issuing them with fines totaling 1,100 euros, and 34 violations by businesses who were fined a total of 38,500 euros.
Meanwhile the 1142 telephone hotline for citizens to get information about the ban and report violations has received more than 2,500 calls since its activation last week, the ministry said.
Out of a total of 2,575 calls, 796 were reports of alleged violations, 828 were requests for information about the ban and 260 were requests for help to quit smoking.
According to the ministry, around 20,000 people die every year in Greece from smoking-related illnesses.
This article was originally published at ekathimerini.com.