Members of Bacta will prohibit minors from using Category D machines at family entertainment centres.
UK.- Bacta, the British amusement machine association, has announced that its members will stop allowing under-18s from playing on Category D cash fruit machines at seaside arcades and family entertainment centres.
The decision will be ratified at Bacta’s annual general meeting on November 26 and will come into force from March 1.
The machines will remain available for adults and will not be segregated.
Bacta president James Miller said the decision has been made to demonstrate that amusement arcades were safe family environments.
He said: “Our members are all about providing fun and entertainment to the whole family as part of their annual holiday or day trip to the seaside.
“We take social responsibility extremely seriously and although Category D cash payout fruit machines operate at very low stake and prize limits which are predominantly played by adults for fun and nostalgia, we wanted to do our utmost and limit any potential risks to gambling harm.”
Chief executive John White said fruit machines had escaped regulation due to their long tradition, but that public perceptions had evolved.
He said: “Category D fruit machines have been long considered as part of the entertainment offer associated with seaside holidays and a trip to the arcade. Regulators in the past have therefore not imposed an age restriction on them.
“However, our members understand that perceptions change and we want to ensure that we do everything possible to protect players.”
Bacta is a supporter of the UK’s Safer Gambling Week, which begins on Thursday (November 19).