Car leasing specialist Boss Automotive is highlighting a new law insisting all UK motorists have a breathalyser kit in their cars when driving in France.
The rule comes into force in July on the back of existing legal requirements for holidaymakers to also carry a warning triangle and a fluorescent safety vest. Motorists are being urged to carry at least two of the single-use breathalysers so that if they have checked themselves with one they can still show police they have a ready-to-use kit if stopped.
Those drivers caught without a kit will face a fine of 11 euros (£9) but the French have said there will be a period of grace till November before police start issuing the penalties. The breathalyser kits cost between around £1 and £2 and will be available at ferry and tunnel terminals for crossings to France, but motoring groups have warned that many drivers will still forget to pack them in their car.
Ken Davis, chief executive of Solihull-based Boss Automotive, which also provides vehicle schemes and fleet management services, said: “It seems unfair on UK drivers that they will have to adhere to yet another requirement to drive on French roads. What we are concerned about is UK drivers not being made aware of this new law and being caught out.”
Motorists found with between 50mg and 80mg of alcohol in 100ml of blood can be fined 135 euros (£112) and lose six out of 12 points on their driving licence. Above that, a driver risks a fine of 4,500 euros (£3,744), losing their licence and being sent to prison for up to two years. The French drink-driving limit of 50mg is lower than the UK limit of 80mg.
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