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How could smoking possibly NOT be a 'hazardous nuisance'?
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Costa
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04/08/2014 - 2:16 pm
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After not the slightest whiff of cigarette smoke for years, all of a sudden we think we have a closet (open window) smoker right undeneath us, in a shared unit, 10 feet or less from my tween son’s bedroom. Also an ex-executive committee member and reformed smoker, miffed at not getting re-elected, has lapsed and taken to smoking downstairs in the common property thus sharing his second hand smoke with 5 other apartments.

I have discovered lots of things about strata living from the wonderful Flat Chat including the ‘hazardous nuisance’ item in the NSW Strata Titles Act, Section 117.1.(a)  & (b) & (c).

In short, I can’t see how anyone can actually get away with smoking anywhere in a strata including its common property unless it’s in a hermetically sealed room. Am I right to think that, in both the examples I cite, the smokers are in breach of the NSW Strata Titles Act and can be asked to stop on the basis that it’s a ‘hazardous nuisance’ and interferes with my ‘enjoyment’? It sounds so deliciously simple.

And yes I agree! Barbecue smoke shouldn’t be shared either!

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Dragandeewhy
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27/11/2014 - 11:07 pm
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I agree BBQ smoke….spicy cooking…strong smells of laundry softeners…certain parfumerie smells in lifts and hallways…

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daphne diaphanous
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28/11/2014 - 8:43 am
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Dragan forgot the clouds of methane vapour everywhere, on balconies, public transport, lifts, offices, small shops, big shops, arcades, malls, cinemas……. I wonder how many Stepford residents have NOT let those off right next to their offending neighbours & disturbed their peace & enjoyment under S117.

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JimmyT
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28/11/2014 - 4:25 pm
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daphne diaphanous said
Dragan forgot the clouds of methane vapour everywhere …

Sailing close to the wind, DD?

I refer Flatchatters to this yarn .

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daphne diaphanous
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28/11/2014 - 4:47 pm
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Many a time dear JimmyT, especially on public transport & lifts, where there is no escape.

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Cosmo
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29/11/2014 - 9:36 am
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Sort of related …. seems smoking everywhere is getting a bad name and being prohibited (and so it should).

 

CHINA’S capital has passed a smoking ban for all indoor public places and offices,

 full story …

https://www.news.com.au/world/asia/beijing-china-to-ban-smoking-in-public/story-fnh81fz8-1227138905590

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29/11/2014 - 11:16 am
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Costa said
And yes I agree! Barbecue smoke shouldn’t be shared either!

Some genius on my building’s executive committee has suggested removing barbecue smoke from the list of toxic fumes – such as cigarette, cigar and tobacco smoke – forbidden on balconies and common property.

Sooner or later someone is going to lift the Aussie blinkers and ask if, given its volume and the number of carcinogens in it, barbecue smoke going from a balcony into someone’s home isn’t more dangerous than the occasional cigarette.

Of course, it’s un-Australian to suggest anything of the kind. However, this web page from the American National Cancer Institute makes sobering reading ,as does THIS, THIS and THIS

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daphne diaphanous
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29/11/2014 - 11:34 am
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Talking about hazard reductions in the human body, we have adjusted our diet & lifestyles by various means to stave of cancer, heart attacks & strokes. What do we expect to die of, especially in strataland (sine we must); Alzheimer’s?

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JimmyT
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29/11/2014 - 6:33 pm
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daphne diaphanous said
Talking about hazard reductions in the human body, we have adjusted our diet & lifestyles by various means to stave of cancer, heart attacks & strokes. What do we expect to die of, especially in strataland (sine we must); Alzheimer’s?

Barbecue smoke – or fire!

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Sir Humphrey
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30/11/2014 - 8:36 am
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JimmyT said

daphne diaphanous said
Dragan forgot the clouds of methane vapour everywhere …

Sailing close to the wind, DD?

I refer Flatchatters to this yarn .

Almost makes me wish we had a lift so I would have the opportunity to pass silent comment on a certain few of my neighbours (most are lovely and for them I would refrain from such comment).

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01/12/2014 - 5:21 pm
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While there seems to be some fun being had in this thread (and why not?)  this can be a deadly serious issue.  Fair to say, for some people, smoking is a drag.

 

But in all seriousness, in Queensland, the Body Corporate Legislation provides that a person must not use their lot or common property in a way that causes a nusiance or hazard or that interferes unreasonably with the use or enjoyment of another lot included in the scheme (BBCMA s 167). 

However, the line between ‘inconveinence’ and unreasonable interference can be difficult.  The QCAT has determined that to amount to a nuisance (as a matter of law), the cigarette smoke emanating from the adjacent lot must be ‘of such volume or frequency that it would interfere unreasonably with the life of another lot owner of ordinary sensitivity.’

Is smelling smoke an unreasonable interference?  Depends, how often does it happen? How much smoke is actually entering the lot (is there any way to objectively measure this?) Is it always coming from the same source? Are you jsut hyper-sensitive to it?

Smelling smoke isn’t the same as breathing smoke.  People have a right to smoke and the body corporate cannot prohibit this.

(I’m not saying I agree, I’m just saying this is the position at law in Queensland).

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Sir Humphrey
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02/12/2014 - 8:27 am
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So many things do come down to judgements about what is ‘reasonable’ and what is not.

We have a few unit owners who seem to think that it is unreasonable for anyone to do anything that causes even the slightest change to the outlook from any window of their unit. Another thinks it is unreasonable to be able to hear ANY noise created by a neighbour.

Most people accept that living in quite close proximity to others will obviously and predictably lead us to be aware of them occasionally, whether it is a little BBQ smoke or some talking or music or whatever. Most accept that people will alter the landscaping in their units or that  minor changes to the common property landscaping are necessary occasionally. 

I had a very charming neighbour who was very quiet nearly all the time but about three times a year he would have a big party with very loud music. He would include all the neighbours and it would go late into the night. I don’t think anybody minded because he was so nice about it and he did not do it ‘unreasonably’ often. 

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daphne diaphanous
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02/12/2014 - 8:36 am
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Dear Queenslander, what a sane contribution & bravo to QCAT! What I found really objectionable earlier was the first post on this topic (see below), relishing the prospect of interfering with everyone, using S117 as a general clobbering tool. Not one single person commented on it.

“In short, I can’t see how anyone can actually get away with smoking anywhere in a strata including its common property unless it’s in a hermetically sealed room. Am I right to think that, in both the examples I cite, the smokers are in breach of the NSW Strata Titles Act and can be asked to stop on the basis that it’s a ‘hazardous nuisance’ and interferes with my ‘enjoyment’? It sounds so deliciously simple.”

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04/12/2014 - 4:07 pm
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Queenslander said

Smelling smoke isn’t the same as breathing smoke.  People have a right to smoke and the body corporate cannot prohibit this.

I can’t really see how someone can smell smoke without breathing it.

An owners corporations can prevent people from doing anything that breaches by-laws, and that includes smoking on common property (like balconies) or in a way that interferes with another persons’s health or peaceful enjoyment of their lot.

The legal precedent has been set in NSW that if you can’t prevent smoke from travelling from inside one person’t unit to another’s, then the only way to do so is for the smoker to stop smoking or move out.

Arguing about degrees of distress caused get us nowhere.  It’s either a problem or it isn’t.  Smoke kills people and affects their health in other ways. As ever, Queensland finds a way of letting the selfish do what they want at everyone else’s expense

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Dragandeewhy
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04/12/2014 - 4:28 pm
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This whole smoking thing is kind of the result of manipulated mass psichology. Nobody ever mentioned smoking marihuana. In my previous post I have mentioned all the other examples where “if you can smell it, it is dangerous for you” but nobody took it seriously.  People live in apartments for100s of years and they all managed somehow.  I find this selective targeting anoying.  Same as this current asbestos hysteria….. Unreasonable fear of nuclear power….gluten free craze.

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05/12/2014 - 5:42 pm
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Dragandeewhy said
This whole smoking thing is kind of the result of manipulated mass psichology. Nobody ever mentioned smoking marihuana. In my previous post I have mentioned all the other examples where “if you can smell it, it is dangerous for you” but nobody took it seriously.  

So, “manipulated mass psychology” is the cause of cancer, heart disease and emphysema?  Get real.

People who smoke stink enough to take the smell with them when they walk into a room. Doesn’t that tell you something about the lingering effects of smoke.

People who lived in apartments 100 years ago had other things to worry about – that doesn’t make smoking OK.

I will cheerfully set fire to the next person who tells me “you breathe in pollution all the time so what difference does cigarette smoke make?”.

It’s called harm minimisation – it’s why we have speed limits and road rules and asbestos laws … to protect ourselves against idiots who don’t care about their own health and expect everyone else to suffer as a consequence.

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11/12/2014 - 10:31 pm
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JimmyT said

Dragandeewhy said
This whole smoking thing is kind of the result of manipulated mass psichology. Nobody ever mentioned smoking marihuana. In my previous post I have mentioned all the other examples where “if you can smell it, it is dangerous for you” but nobody took it seriously.  

So, “manipulated mass psychology” is the cause of cancer, heart disease and emphysema?  Get real.

People who smoke stink enough to take the smell with them when they walk into a room. Doesn’t that tell you something about the lingering effects of smoke.

People who lived in apartments 100 years ago had other things to worry about – that doesn’t make smoking OK.

I will cheerfully set fire to the next person who tells me “you breathe in pollution all the time so what difference does cigarette smoke make?”.

It’s called harm minimisation – it’s why we have speed limits and road rules and asbestos laws … to protect ourselves against idiots who don’t care about their own health and expect everyone else to suffer as a consequence.

Are you saying that every “stink” or smell is harmful for you? Harm minimisation or positive discrimination how ever you call it still gives the right to the morally superior once to openly hate the addicts. In the north of Sydney they are openly hated while going more to the west or south the tolerance towards smokers increases. While visiting Europe or other continents the whole discomfort around smoking miraculously disappears.  This is what I was talking about with “mass physiology”.  A push biker will openly show discomfort in the presence of a person who smokes while he or she inhales with the full capacity of his her lungs the fumes of peak hour traffic, thinking that he is living a healthy life style. Etc etc etc.

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Sir Humphrey
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12/12/2014 - 7:56 am
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Dragandeewhy said

A push biker will openly show discomfort in the presence of a person who smokes while he or she inhales with the full capacity of his her lungs the fumes of peak hour traffic, thinking that he is living a healthy life style. Etc etc etc.

I am sure your hypothetical cyclist would much prefer that the other vehicles on the road were other cyclists or electric vehicles not producing the fumes.

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JimmyT
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12/12/2014 - 9:26 am
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Dragandeewhy said 
Are you saying that every “stink” or smell is harmful for you?

As you will see, I am not saying anything of the kind.  Cigarette smoke is known to cause cancer and other diseases, even among passive smokers. The USA’s Surgeon General says that living with a smoker increases your chances of contracting lung cancer by 30 percent.

Harm minimisation or positive discrimination how ever you call it still gives the right to the morally superior once to openly hate the addicts.

“Positive discrimination” has nothing to do with it.  I don’t hate the addicts – I just hate the attitude that I have to risk my health and my peaceful enjoyment of my home so they can kill themselves in theirs.

In the north of Sydney they are openly hated while going more to the west or south the tolerance towards smokers increases.

And look at the cancer and heart disease rates there. Only six percent of people in Northern Sydney smoke compared to 14 to 16 percent in Western and South-Western Sydney.  That’s peer group pressure for you but even out west it’s still a tiny minority inflicting their filthy habits on others.

While visiting Europe or other continents the whole discomfort around smoking miraculously disappears.  

According to you … it used to be the same in New York and L.A. – try lighting up in a restaurant or bar there now, or in Sweden and the other Scandinavian countries. According to this website “currently, 17 EU countries have comprehensive smoke-free laws in place. Among these, Ireland, the UK, Greece, Bulgaria, Malta, Spain and Hungary have the strictest smoke-free provisions with a complete ban on smoking in enclosed public places, on public transport and in workplaces, with only limited exceptions allowed.”

And if you look at this report you will see that the areas of the world that were late to take up the non-smoking banner (Europe and North America) had the highest cancer rates. 

This is what I was talking about with “mass physiology”.  

So it’s “mass physiology” now is it?  Isn’t than a fun run or a pump class at the gym? 

A push biker will openly show discomfort in the presence of a person who smokes while he or she inhales with the full capacity of his her lungs the fumes of peak hour traffic, thinking that he is living a healthy life style. Etc etc etc.

That is a pathetic argument. Flip it and you have the cyclist deciding not to ride in traffic because the idiot downstairs from them is filling his flat with cigarette smoke, so what’s the point in trying to be healthy?  FYI, governments all around the world have made huge inroads into the level of pollutants from cars and other vehicle. Tried to buy petrol that isn’t lead-free recently?

This is an all-too-common bleat against a healthy lifestyle because it might affect others’ “rights” to pollute the air breathed by the people around them. Two of the five recommended ways to lower your risk of cancer, according to this easy to follow document  are to avoid smoking and to exercise regularly. Where does that leave your passive smoking cyclist?

How do you feel about the “right” to go out at night, get paralytic drunk then punch the crap out of some unsuspecting innocent stranger. “Ooooh … but it’s my addiction … I’m the victim here … what about my civil rights?” 

If the “Nanny State” exists – and I’m not sure it does – it’s not because some people can’t be trusted to look after themselves, it’s because they are happy to take other people to Hell with them in the same handcart. 

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14/12/2014 - 1:03 am
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We obviously do not understand each other. You come from one side of ideological thinking I come from the side of “live and let live”. This topic is to large to be typed on a space of a forum thread. Through out the whole human history there was some sort of substance abuse that took other people to hell. Right now there is a constant positive media coverage of marihuana while smartly avoiding the negatives of marihuana abuse. Nobody is mentioning the marihuana rehab centres in holland or South Africa.  Remember it is great to build haven but once you build it you might find that it is place that nothing ever happens.

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