UK & World News
France-Bound? Take Breathalysers Or Face Fine
Motorists in France now have to carry breathalyser kits in their vehicles after new laws came into force aimed at reducing drink-drive related deaths.
Drivers and motorcyclists will face on-the-spot fines unless they travel with two single-use devices as part of a government initiative.
The new regulations, which exclude mopeds, will be fully enforced and it is hoped they will save around 500 lives a year.
The rules are aimed at encouraging drivers who suspect they may be over the limit to test themselves with the kits.
Motorists from overseas will have a four-month grace period but anyone failing to produce a breathalyser after November 1 will receive an 11 euro (£8) fine.
French police have warned they will be carrying out random checks on drivers crossing into France via ferries and through the Channel Tunnel to enforce the new laws.
Retailers in the UK have reported a massive rise in breathalyser sales as British drivers travelling across the Channel ensure they do not fall foul of the legislation.
But six out of 10 Britons travelling to France are not aware they have to carry two approved breathalysers at all times, according to a survey by Halfords.
It said it is selling one kit every minute of the day and has rushed extra stock into stores to cope with the unprecedented demand.
Halfords also found one in 10 drivers does not display a GB sticker, risking a 90 euro (£72) fine.
The French drink-driving limit is 50mg of alcohol in 100ml of blood - substantially less than the UK limit of 80mg.
Anyone driving in France must also carry a warning triangle, a fluorescent safety vest and a fire extinguisher.
Hello, regular commenting on Orange News and Sport pages closes on Thursday 30 May 2013. We will continue to provide a commenting facility on major news and sport events on orangeworld.co.uk. Contact us via http://oran.ge/OWfeedback if you have any further questions. Thanks.
what do you think?
Wait for it ..........!
If you have to carry 2 approved breathalysers, it means you need to carry at least 3 if not 4
yep,you soon won't have room for your suitcases
Why do you need to display a GB sticker ? it is already on your number plate under the EU stars
Steven James Foulds
Not necessarily. They're not fiited as standard from new, only if the buyer requests it, and pays a premium.
If it is a French problem of drink driving and this law is only for France by France and not across the European union why should it apply to vehicles registered outside France? Have the French imported the great British pastime of 'milking the motorist'?
Irrespective of where the vehicle is registered, if it is being driven on French roads then their laws apply as it does in the UK.
Buy your breathalser kits in France or on the ferry. Cost £2, cost in England £6-8. each. !!!!.
Steven James Foulds
I don't drink alcohol. I am the only one who drives our car in France. So why would I need a breathalyser any more than I would need, say, an emergency insulin injection? I look forward to arguing this one with the next French cop to pull me up.....
Good luck with that one...............I think you'l need it.
It is also the law throughout most of Europe to have --- spare bulbs, hi viz vest, triangle, first aid kit and fire extinguisher. Do you really think anyone should be above the law and a complete ass?
Windows Live User
French Police spending time carrying out checks on UK motorists. All for an £8 fine. It really makes you wonder if they havent got more pressing work to do? Traffic heading this way getting more checks perhaps?
Yup, no illegals heading our way for them to check for of course.
gengisken, it's not the job of the French police to check if there are any 'illegals' heading our way, but it is their job to ensure drivers are fit to drive, period!
I cannot understand the comments against the french government because they are trying to save lives! Also they are giving you the opportunity to decide for yourself whether you should be driving...........remember " to thine own self be true" Have you no sons or daughters? If this new law saved thier lives wouldnt it be worth spending a few pounds. Anyone who is against this law must be a cold,callous fool
no,Carol we are not cold,callous fools we are just realistic.This law will not save a single life.Just imagine you have had a lovely lunch in a nice auberge and get into your car and use 1 of your breathyalyser and you are under the limit.Half an hour later you are involved in an accident,breathalysed by the police,using proper equipment,not toytown stuff, and are over the limit.This is because alcohol takes time to get into the body (ask the AA).Therefore this law is poinrless.
Well said Carol, the law is intended to coax people into taking some responsibility for their actions if imbibing alcohol. Sadly there are people who are too arrogant and full of their own importance who feel any law that is not British should not apply to them, you only have to read the other reply to see what I mean and then roll back your eyes in despair!
Not being cynical of course but I wonder which French MP got a big brown envelope for introducing this utterly pointless law.Still,at least the breathalyser makers will be employing people
I dont think so CAROL !!! More likely they thought....How can we save some money in the Police budget? I know.....lets get the motorist to buy the breathalysers... and we will save a fortune not having to buy so many!! NOT CYNICAL OR ANYTHING......BUT WHO WOULD YOU BELIEVE TODAY??????
Certainly not you Mike, do you really believe such carnage on the roads due to the arrogance of couldn't care less drivers is something to be applauded?
What the heck is wrong with people - the rights and wrongs don't matter. Its simple, either obey the French law and get your breathalysers, warning triangles and fluorescent jackets or dont go to France. Your choice
The voice of common sense --- how refreshing!
Did anyone realise that National Express Coaches, Euroloine Coaches and a lot of European Coaches now have 'Alcolocks' fitted to them. The driver has to give a breath sample into them before the vehicle can start, if the alcolock detects alcohol then the vehicle simply won't start. I feel this should be fitted to all and every vehicle throughout all of Europe which of course includes us. Think of the lives it would save, possibly yours or those of your nearest and dearest, only a cr*tin would object to this!
Sounds good until you just get a mate to blow into it to start the car up for you....not exactly foolproof is it.
Two single-use breathalysers - but once you use one of them, you have broken the law as you only have one left. So how mamny of these devices should each motorist carry in the car? As the old school exam papers used to say: discuss. That said, I agree that if you want to visit France, then one has to abide by their laws. I only wish people had to abide by ours.
buy three then david.
If drink drivers are already idioitc enough to get behind the wheel while drunk, can we really trust them to take their own breathalyser and then act on it correctly if they are over the limit? I cant see it!