Smoking in outdoor public events and places

Smoking is not permitted at public events or within community facilities in the Northern Territory under the Tobacco Control Act 2002.

These events and facilities must have smoke-free buffer areas.

Events that need buffer areas

Events and facilities that need smoke-free buffer areas include:

  • all community events for the public
  • bike racing facilities
  • community markets
  • horse racing and dog racing facilities
  • motorcycle and car racing facilities
  • playgroup facilities and playgrounds
  • pop-up events
  • school grounds
  • showground facilities
  • sports fields
  • swimming pools.

If you organise an event or manage a facility

If you organise public events or manage a community facility, you must create a 10-metre smoke-free buffer area from all boundaries, entry and exit points.

These buffer areas must have signs to show that smoking is not permitted. Templates for signage are available from the tobacco compliance and liaison officer. Get the contact details below.

Fines for smoking in buffer areas

Authorised officers may issue fines to people smoking tobacco products or using e-cigarettes in smoke-free areas.

The penalty is a:

  • minimum fine of 80% of a penalty unit if issued through an infringement notice or
  • maximum fine of 20 penalty units if issued by the court.

Find out more about penalty units on the Department of Attorney-General and Justice website.

More information

For more information, go to the Department of Health website.


Contact the tobacco compliance and liaison officer by calling 08 8999 2830 or emailing

Last updated: 10 June 2021

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