Heatwave sees golf courses ban smoking while playing in UK

Source: Xinhua| 2018-08-05 00:19:21|Editor: yan
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LONDON, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- Lasting heatwaves have prompted hundreds of golf clubs in the United Kingdom to ban smoking in an "unprecedented" move to reduce the risk of fires starting on dried out courses.

BBC Weather has forecast a "cold front" could disrupt scorching temperatures Saturday as it sweeps across some parts of the country, while the south of Britain is expecting thermometers to near 33 degrees Celsius.

Sustained hot weather has prompted them to tell golfers they can no longer light up while playing.

Over the past weeks, heatwaves and rare rain fall already led to yellow lawns and shrinking lakes in many parts of Britain.

The British Golf Club Managers Association (GCMA) found 60 percent of clubs in the UK have temporarily banned smoking because of the heatwave conditions this summer.

They said courses should "urgently consider the measure."

Many golfers who smoke will lay cigarettes down on the grass to keep their hands free while playing shots, increasing the potential risk for fires starting.

James Hutchinson from the British and International Green Keepers Association said many courses were like a "tinder box."

"It is a massive issue," he said. "I've been in the industry since 1988 and we have had one other summer I remember that was anywhere close to being as dry as this."

"This decision of so many clubs to ban smoking is highly unusual."

Courses across the UK have taken the step, with most in the southeast and northwest of England in particular known to have introduced a ban.