Butt out the window and face big fines

WHERE there's smoke there's ire - and a huge fine if you are silly enough to throw your butt out of a car.

About 5817 fines of $227 to $455 have been issued across the state since February, 2012.

The Sunshine Coast, Ipswich and Mackay were among the worst offenders.

Smokers on the Coast copped 218 fines, in Ipswich 149 fines were issued and 99 Mackay residents were hit over the past few years.

Also ranking highly were Gladstone, Toowoomba and Rockhampton and Bundaberg.

Gympie, the Fraser Coast and Warwick were among the best areas in the state.

Keep Australia Beautiful chief Peter McLean said drivers were the major offenders.

"I've had a lit cigarette hit me in the face that was flicked out of a car window before - people are just not getting the message,'' he said.

"You may have a licence to drive, but you don't have a licence to litter."

Rural Fire Service Queensland Assistant Commissioner Neil Gallant said butts caused hundreds of blazes each year.

"We're asking people to think about the consequences of their actions, be responsible and help prevent bushfires," he said. 

Butt out

The number of cigarette butt litter infringement notices issued in your region since February 2012

  • Sunshine Coast: 218
  • Ipswich: 149
  • Mackay: 99
  • Gladstone: 65
  • Toowoomba: 47
  • Rockhampton: 47
  • Bundaberg: 33
  • Gympie: 12
  • Fraser Coast: 8
  • Warwick: 0
  • State-wide: 5748

About 33 butts per 1000m² are found in Queensland each year.

What it costs

  • The fine for throwing a butt from a vehicle is $227
  • If the littering is considered dangerous you will pay $455

Source: Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection

Topics:  cigarettes environment litter rubbish smoking

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