Hsinchu City, in northern Taiwan is on a mission to safeguard the health of its residents by limiting their exposure to second-hand smoke. The city’s Health Bureau have designated over 5,000 public outdoor areas as no smoking zones and each is marked with a sign and a unique QR Code. Smoking is already illegal indoors in public areas and is now also illegal in these outdoor zones (images below).
The QR Codes are there to make it easy for the public to report any transgressors and although the codes all resolve to the same mobile site they each have a different query string so that the Health Bureau can determine which specific code was scanned.
A sense of civic duty may not be enough for some citizens so the authorities are also offering the incentive of a daily entry into a prize draw to win an i-Pad. The reporting can also be done anonymously if you wish or are not interested in entering the draw.
The Health Bureau sends out inspectors to the locations from which the most reports are originating and they will offer guidance to the smokers or fine persistent offenders $350.
Map showing the location of the QR Coded no-smoking signs.
Image of the no-smoking sign taken from a Taiwan TV news broadcast.