HEALTH experts are hitting the road to drive home the message about the dangers of illegal tobacco.
An eye-catching bus is touring Prescot, and other areas of Knowsley, to raise awareness about the dangers of smoking illegal tobacco.
The initiative also gives teenagers a sneak peek into the future by showing them what they could look like if they don’t kick the habit.
It’s all part of Knowsley Council’s campaign to tackle the problems caused by illegal tobacco, such as encouraging children to start smoking, funding crime in the community and killing thousands of people each year.
People who board the bus can find out more information about illegal tobacco and get professional help and advice on how to kick the habit.
Hi-tech age-progression software also produces images of what people will look like in the future after years of smoking tobacco.
Councillor Ken Keith said: “We are always looking for different ways to spread the message about the dangers of illegal tobacco and the bus is a great way to do that.
“As well as providing information and advice, I think being able to show youngsters what they will look like after years of smoking really hits home and makes them think about the damage they are doing to their own health.
“I’d urge people not to buy illegal tobacco. It may be tempting because it is cheaper, but they must remember that the ingredients are unknown, which makes them extremely dangerous. Being cheaper also makes it easier for children to start smoking and it can bring crime into our communities.”
Illegal tobacco products are cigarettes or tobacco which has been smuggled or faked.
If you are offered cheap cigarettes or tobacco, there are a number of tell-tale signs you should look out for, such as foreign brand names, cheaper prices, foreign health warnings, no picture health warnings and unusual packing with spelling mistakes or incorrect logos.