Three Belfast tanning shops served under-age girl
Three Belfast tanning shops have been fined after they allowed a 15-year-old girl to use their facilities.
Belfast City Council sent the girl to 10 shops to test if they complied with current legislation around the use of sunbeds.
It is illegal for anyone under the age of 18 to use a sunbed on commercial premises.
Of the three shops which allowed the girl to use their sunbeds, each was fined £250.
The council refused to name and shame the businesses as it said they could still appeal the fixed penalty notice.
A council spokeswoman said: “It’s important to raise awareness of this legislation which has been in place since May 2012.
"Sunbeds are commonly used throughout Northern Ireland and have become increasingly popular since the 1990s.
"Modern sunbeds work by exposing the user to UV radiation which can be the equivalent of Mediterranean sunlight at midday in August."
She added: "The new law was introduced because of the growing evidence of the health risks associated with sunbed use, including skin cancer, with young people at particular risk.
“It’s vitally important that people are aware of the risks associated with sunbed use, and it’s also important that businesses understand the law."