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Milan cracks down on food trucks, selfie sticks, and drinks in glass bottles in summer ban

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Milan's Darsena district on a summer afternoon. File photo: AndreaA/Depositphotos
11:01 CEST+02:00
Milan's town hall has clamped down on food trucks, selfie sticks, and drinks in glass bottles or cans in the latest ban aimed at tackling litter and anti-social behaviour in Italy over the summer months.

The new regulations, effective from Friday, ban the sale and distribution of any drinks in glass bottles or tins from the Darsena docklands area.

Tourists and locals are  forbidden from "holding, carrying, leaving on the ground, disposing of, or receiving any kind of glass bottles or containers, cans, and selfie sticks". The same rule applies to firecrackers and fireworks.

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Food trucks and street sellers were also targeted in the summer rules, which will be effective until August 13th but could be extended further. The regulation prohibits all kinds of "moving trade" in public areas, with street food specifically singled out by the ban.

Milan's councillor for security, Carmela Rozza, said there was a possibility of renewing the regulation and that it "will continue until it is needed".

She added that the aim was to "make it a habit not to bring glass bottles or cans in the area" and hoped that people would get used to drinking from plastic cups instead.

Other Italian cities have introduced similar measures to crack down on littering and anti-social behaviour over the summer months.

Capital city Rome and northern business hub Turin have banned late night alcohol sales, after over 1,500 people were injured in a stampede in Turin during an outdoor screening of a football match. It is unclear what caused the moment of panic, but a large number of injuries were cuts due to shards of glass from drinks bottles, many thought to have been bought from illegal sellers.

In Rome, the anti-alcohol regulations were criticized by bars which claimed their rights as businesses had been infringed, as well as by locals who noted that Ottavia, the district where mayor Virginia Raggi lives, was the only neighbourhood exempt from the ban.

The capital has also forbidden climbing on, bathing in, or picnicking near its ancient fountains, with fines of up to €240 in place for those who fail to comply.

Florentine mayor Dario Nardella took a different approach to targeting those who eat, drink and litter at iconic sites. Rather than introduce a set of fines, the mayor instead announced in May that the steps of the city's churches would be hosed down at lunchtime in an effort to deter would-be snackers.

"If the tourists want to sit there, they'll get wet," Nardella said.

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