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Breath testers mandatory in all vehicles from Spring?


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[quote user="idun"]Something else we need for our next trip over.[/quote]

Wait and see if it ever reaches the light of day ...

[quote user="idun"]Will that mean as there will be no excuse to drive over the limit from next spring that they will throw the book at anyone doing it?[/quote]

I note that in many of the incidents that result in deaths that I have read of in Languedoc-Roussillon, the drivers are not only drunk, but possess no licence and no insurance and frequently have taken drugs. Somehow, as I think you are intimating, I don't see a breath tester - even one wired into the ignition - being any impediment to this behaviour.



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The DIY breath testers are notoriously unreliable compared to the "proper" devices used by the gendarmerie. I can't see this move being at all popular unless they were to be supplied free of charge, and that will surely never happen! [B]
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Round here outside the local town, nearly all the accidents are caused by these nuisance vehicles and those driving them are usually so drunk they don't even notice what is around t hem. The other week, one of these sans permis,turned down a dead end lane to a farm just along the road from us. The driver was so drunk he managed to write off a parked car in the entrance to the farmyard and end up on his side in a nearby ditch and walked away with just a sprained ankle and no recollection next day of ever being there. As most folks know, the people in the majority who drive these have either no original permis or have been banned from driving a conventional vehicle.
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This is a joke isn't it ?

Leaving aside the logistics and practicalities for a moment what planet is Sarko on if he thinks this bizarre and ridiculous proposal will have any positive impact on drink driving.

A - Those who habitually drive drunk will continue to do so until they are caught and removed from the road or kill themselves.

B - Those who drink responsibly and in moderation will be more tempted to drink up to the limit.

C - Those who don't drink and drive at all will resent it as an intrusion for which a moments absent mindedness in not having an utterly useless and unused piece of equipment in the car will cost them a fine and possibly even a loss of points.

The article asks if it will be for new cars or retroactive, of course it will be retroactive, he already says 'in every car' how can it be otherwise, and couples or families who have more than one car will require one for each, just like HiViz vests.

On the logistics, depending on who you ask there may be as many as 23m cars in France, let's round that down to 20m and then say that only 75% of them are actually 'on the road'. That leaves 17.5m and where pray are anything like that number of breathalysers going to come from between now and Spring when he wants this to come into force ?

Another thing, as Sid says these sort of devices are notoriously innacurate but if people are being encouraged, if not obliged, to use them to judge their level of intoxication, and pass their own but fail a gendarmes more accurate test I can see the lawyers having a field day with that, right up as far as the ECHR !

It's truly the politics of a banana republic !

Education and harsh punishment are the only tools which can effectively address drink driving, and in fact all delinquent driving behaviour. They could make a start by making a ban a ban and doing away with the system whereby convicted DD's can still drive to work and back which I believe exists here. If they want to allow offenders the means to get to work and support their families I'm all for it, they are the innocent victims, but let them ride a 50cc moped and if they are caught drunk on that then send them to jail for 6 months, no questions asked. Ditto for sans permis drivers.

I'm not defending DD at all (and please, let's not get into the 'don't drink at all' debate here) but it would be interesting to see the figures for how many DD's were actually involved in serious or fatal accidents or how many of the dead bikers, who remember account for 24% of all deaths whilst only representing 2% of road users, were drunk.

All I'm suggesting is that if they are trying to reduce road deaths then maybe, just maybe, targetting DD's may not be the most effective and productive strategy.

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It's good for shares in the companies that manufacture these things.

Personally I'd like to see them linked in some way to the starter so if the driver doesn't pass the car won't start.

Of course there would be ways round it, but it would be a start.


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[quote user="NormanH"]Personally I'd like to see them linked in some way to the starter so if the driver doesn't pass the car won't start.[/quote]

... or simply ban the sale of alcholic drink? [:-))]

This appears to me to be another "hammer to crack" a nut idea; it's out of all proportion to the scale of the original problem. Drugs are a greater worry.

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What have people got against these measures?

"Interior Minister Claude Guéant has also asked EU authorities to look at

the obligatory installation of anti-start breath test monitors in each

car. Drivers would have to blow into the machine - and pass - before

their car would start.


Is what I was referring to.

Surely this could help to reduce the appalling number of recidivists driving around under the influence ...?

I would also have a 0% rule as in some Eastern European countries.

At least you know where you are with that.  No 'one for the road'

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I have to agree with you Norman, but the problem would be the retro fitting of such a system; and of course the cost . Or we come to the situation where only new cars have the devise,  then the problem  is the new car industry would collapse. I once asked a police inspector who was extolling the virtues of everybody driving slower; why him and his colleagues didn't lobby for cars to be produced with a much lower speed capability? His answer, it wouldn't be politically popular. Unfortunately your suggestion falls into that category.
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[quote user="NormanH"]What have people got against these measures?[/quote]Sledge hammer to crack a nut is what.

Why should those who never touch a drop be forced to blow into a bloody tube to start their car to drive 1/2km to the shops just because a tiny minority, and that's what it is, do drink to excess and and drive.

It would be wide open to fiddling anyway, if you're over then you get someone who isn't to blow and start the car, some enterprising souls could even make money out of it by hanging around outside bars to do just that - for a fee - and suddenly you now have a car, driven by a drunk, who the police will have less reason to pull over because, according to the technology, you can't be drunk and driving at the same time, unless the plan is to have to refresh it every 10 minutes that is !

Such a measure could not possibly be made retroactive so you would instantly create division and resentment between the new car buying and bag blowing public, and the rest. Also, as Nick says, it would be a massive turn off for the car industry and if not adopted as an EU wide measure (never in million years) would mean that you could never legally import a car without it, that in itself would fall completely foul of EU free trade rules.

I can scarcely believe that any politician from a civilised democratic society could even come up with such a fundametally flawed and unworkable scheme, or be stupid enough to start talking about it when barely 6 months away from an election !

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Norman wrote :

Drivers would have to blow into the machine and pass - before their car would start. "

I can see a way round that being found easily

For example ...squeeze the air from an empty water bottle in it ..start up and drive off .

Taxi drivers will need a good pair of lungs as they stop and start all day ..

I cant see that working ... The fear factor that works now is set to stay I think . The fear of being stopped if you have had a drink and the fear of being taken off the road for a year .
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With regards to speeding. My GPS tells me the current speed limit wherever I am, OK sometimes it gets it wrong but not that often and when it's wrong it's more than often showing a slower speed than the actual limit. It certainly works in France and in Spain. My current car has cruise control and speed limiter and a lot of new cars (mine is 9 years old) have them as standard. So, why can't the two be joined together making it virtually impossible to speed. It does not effect the acceleration of the car when I use the speed limiter, it just won't go any faster than the speed it's limited to. Why not make it obligatory to set the maximum speed of cars to be set at the maximum speed allowable in a particular country? Simpler still, just to help the car makers, harmonise the speed limits across the EU. I was thinking just the other day when watching a TV program where they had a car limited to something like 280kph, whats the point, where are you going to drive normally at that sort of speed?

There are many ways to skin a rabbit as they say and the motor car industry really has to act responsibly and play it's roll which is why I always think that speed cameras are only there to make money for somebody.

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