Smoking Regulations in Hawaii


Chapter 328 of Title 19 of the Hawaii Revised Statute prohibits smoking in all enclosed or partially enclosed areas, including buildings and vehicles owned, leased, or operated by the State or any county.[i]

Under the laws of Hawaii, smoking is prohibited in all enclosed or partially enclosed areas open to the public, including airports and public transportation facilities and vehicles, and ticket, boarding, and waiting areas of public transit depots.[ii]  It is also prohibited in aquariums, galleries, libraries, and museums[iii] and areas generally used by the general public, including restrooms, lobbies, reception areas, hallways, and other common areas, in businesses and nonprofit entities patronized by the public, offices, banks, hotels, and motels[iv], bars[v], bowling alleys[vi], convention facilities[vii], educational facilities[viii] and elevators.[ix]

Smoking is permitted in facilities primarily used for exhibiting a motion picture, stage, drama, lecture, musical recital, or other similar performance, only when it is done as part of the performance.[x]  Smoking in health care facilities[xi], hotel and motel lobbies, meeting rooms, and banquet facilities[xii], licensed child care and adult day care facilities[xiii], lobbies, hallways, and other common areas in apartment buildings, condominiums, retirement facilities, nursing homes[xiv], nightclubs[xv], polling places[xvi], restaurants[xvii], and retail stores[xviii] is also prohibited.

Rooms, chambers, places of meeting or public assembly under the control of the State or county[xix], service lines[xx] and shopping malls[xxi] are also places where smoking is not permitted.   Smoking is also prohibited in all enclosed or partially enclosed areas and in seating areas of sports arenas, outdoor arenas, stadiums, and amphitheaters.[xxii]

As regards work places, in Hawaii, smoking is prohibited in all enclosed or partially enclosed areas of places of employment.[xxiii]

However, an employee who works in a setting where an employer allows smoking does not waive or otherwise surrender any legal rights the employee may have against the employer.[xxiv]

The areas where the prohibition on smoking does not apply are private residences (except when used as a licensed child care, adult day care, or health care facility)[xxv], hotel and motel rooms that are rented to guests and are designated as smoking rooms (but not more than twenty per cent of rooms rented to guests in a hotel or motel may be so designated).[xxvi] Smoking is also allowed in retail tobacco stores (but smoke from these places should not infiltrate into areas where smoking is prohibited)[xxvii] and private and semiprivate rooms in nursing homes and long-term care facilities occupied by one or more persons, all of whom are smokers and have requested in writing to be placed in a room where smoking is permitted (but smoke from these places should not infiltrate into areas where smoking is prohibited).[xxviii]  Smoking is permitted in outdoor areas of places[xxix] as well as when smoking is part of a production being filmed.[xxx]  It is also allowed in state correctional facilities.[xxxi]           

The Hawaii Revised Statute also deals with penalties for violating the statute.[xxxii] A person who smokes in an area where smoking is prohibited is guilty of a violation and can be fined an amount not more than $50 to be deposited into the general fund.[xxxiii]  The district courts may also assess costs not to exceed $25 for issuing a penal summons on any person who fails to appear at the place within the time specified in the citation issued to the person.[xxxiv]

If any person fails to comply with a penal summons given to the person, the court can issue a warrant for the person’s arrest.[xxxv]  Police officers or other officers or employees of the respective government jurisdictions also have the authority to eject from the premises any person to whom a citation has been issued and who still continues to smoke.[xxxvi]

A person who owns, manages, operates, or controls any place where smoking is legally prohibited, but does not take any steps to comply with the rule will be guilty of a violation.[xxxvii]  Such a person will be liable for fine of more than $100 for a first violation[xxxviii], not more than $200 for a second violation within one year of the date of the first violation[xxxix], and not more than $500 for each additional violation within one year of the date of the preceding violation.[xl]

In addition to the fines, a person who owns, manages, operates, or controls a place or facility may have to face suspension or revocation of permit or license issued to the person or the place for the premises on which the violation occurred.[xli]

Moreover, each day on which a violation occurs shall be considered a separate and distinct violation.[xlii]

[i]HRS § 328J-2

[ii] HRS § 328J-3(1)

[iii] HRS § 328J-3(2)

[iv] HRS § 328J-3(3)

[v] HRS § 328J-3(4)

[vi] HRS § 328J-3(5)

[vii] HRS § 328J-3(6)

[viii] HRS § 328J-3(7)

[ix] HRS § 328J-3(8)

[x] HRS § 328J-3(9)

[xi] HRS § 328J-3(10)

[xii] HRS § 328J-3(11)

[xiii] HRS § 328J-3(12)

[xiv] HRS § 328J-3(13)

[xv] HRS § 328J-3(14)

[xvi] HRS § 328J-3(15)

[xvii] HRS § 328J-3(16)

[xviii] HRS § 328J-3(17)

[xix] HRS § 328J-3(18)

[xx] HRS § 328J-3(19)

[xxi] HRS § 328J-3(20)

[xxii] HRS § 328J-5

[xxiii] HRS § 328J-4

[xxiv] HRS § 328J-10

[xxv] HRS § 328J-7(1)

[xxvi] HRS § 328J-7(2)

[xxvii] HRS § 328J-7(3)

[xxviii] HRS § 328J-7(4)

[xxix] HRS § 328J-7(5)

[xxx] HRS § 328J-7(6)

[xxxi] HRS § 328J-7(7)

[xxxii] HRS § 328J-12

[xxxiii] HRS § 328J-12(a)

[xxxiv] Id

[xxxv] HRS § 328J-12(d)

[xxxvi]HRS § 328J-12(e)

[xxxvii] HRS § 328J-12(f)

[xxxviii] HRS § 328J-12(f)(1)

[xxxix] HRS § 328J-12(f)(2)

[xl] HRS § 328J-12(f)(3)

[xli] HRS § 328J-12(g)

[xlii] HRS § 328J-12(h)