France set to scrap law requiring drivers to carry alcohol breathalysers in cars at all times

A law that requires all drivers in France to keep at least one disposable breathalyser kit in the car at all times is set to be scrapped, it has been decided.

The controversial rule, which was first introduced in March 2013, has meant that all Britons crossing the Channel in their vehicles have legally been obliged to have one of the breathalysers with them.

But the confusing stipulation looks set to be dropped by the French government, which is due to adopt a new transport and mobility bill into law that discards the requirement for the kits.

Soon to be scrapped? Britons driving into France could soon no longer be required by law to have an alcohol breathalyser kit in the car The rule demanding that all drivers have one breathalyser in the car was first introduced in March 2013, though there have never been fines in place if you're caught without one The French National Assembly confirmed that the bill had been voted in on Tuesday afternoon The disposable kits cost from around £3 in Halford or £6 on P&O ferries. Motoring groups have recommended that Britons have one in France to avoid a ticking off from local police The disposable kits cost from around £3 in Halford or £6 on P&O ferries. Motoring groups have recommended that Britons have one in France to avoid a ticking off from local police

The disposable kits cost from around £3 in Halford or £6 on P&O ferries. Motoring groups have recommended that Britons have one in France to avoid a ticking off from local police

While the drink drive limit in the UK is 0.8mg/ml of alcohol per litre of blood, it is almost half that across the Channel.

In France, the allowance is a maximum of 0.5mg/ml, reduced to 0.2 mg/ml for younger drivers. 

Dennis added: ‘The best advice is to never drink and drive, whether driving in France or elsewhere. 

‘For any driver that still chooses to, it still makes a lot of sense to carry a portable breathalyser to check they are well below the relevant legal limit.’  

Hunter Abbott, managing director of breathalyser manufacturer AlcoSense Laboratories, said the law would not be changed immediately and warned motorists it might still be a good idea to use the disposable devices if the obligation to carry them is eventually dropped.

‘It is still a legal requirement to carry an NF approved breathalyser in the vehicle while driving in France and that will be the case for a while yet,’ he told This is Money.

‘With the French limit significantly lower than the English limit and the penalties harsher, it would still be advisable to carry a breathalyser to test yourself while driving in France and avoid unintentionally drink driving.’

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