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No plan to extend breathalyser date

Faced with stock shortages, original July 1 deadline was pushed to November - but there are no plans to extend further

THE deadline for equipping your car with a breathalyser kit will not be extended any further, despite severe shortages on supermarket and pharmacy shelves, the French road safety authority has announced.

Sécurité Routière says the current November 1 date - pushed back from the original July 1 deadline - will remain in place.

A spokesperson told Le Parisien: "By November 1, some 100 million breathalysers are forecast to have been put on sale. Do the maths - everyone should have bought one by then."

One supplier, Contralco, told the paper: "We had supply problems but everything should be in order within a few weeks. Since the law was announced last year, we have hired 160 people and invested €3million in new machinery. We will increase our production levels to 200,000 a day."

Other suppliers are in the process of having their breath test kits approved by official testers, which should increase supplies. Some online sites have reported delays of up to 120 days for products to be delivered.

It is believed that some shops are deliberately build up stocks and not putting the breathalysers on sale immediately, preferring to wait for the start of the school year.

Drivers who do not have a breathalyser in their vehicle by November 1 face an €11 fine. The kits cost between €1 and €2.

Earlier this summer, French customs officers seized 19,500 fake Chinese breathalysers in raids at Charles de Gaulle Airport, Marseille and Lyon.

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