The Ministry for Health has said that plastic visors do not fit the specifications for obligatory mask wearing in France.
As such, people who wear plastic visors in places where face masks are mandatory could be fined up to €135 for not following the rules.
In an interview with news source AFP, the ministry said: “A visor is not a protective mask so it doesn’t fit the regulations for obligatory mask-wearing.
“These objects cannot, in any case, be considered as protective equipment for the person wearing them, or for the people they come into contact with.”
This statement includes both whole-face visors, attached at the forehead, and chin visors, which cover the lower-half of the face.
Les "visières menton", ces objets transparents qui ne couvrent que le bas du visage, ne sont pas considérés comme des masques de protection et les porter ne protège pas d'une amende, a averti la Direction générale de la santé, interrogée par l' #AFP pic.twitter.com/sDfvyO48Qm— Agence France-Presse (@afpfr) October 1, 2020
Visors can give extra protection, when worn with masks
Visors do not provide the same protective qualities as masks as they do not effectively cover the mouth, studies have shown.
A study published in the American journal Physics of Fluids on September 1, found that liquid droplets “can move around the visor with relative ease and spread out over a large area”.
This means if a person wearing a visor were to sneeze or cough, those around them would be poorly protected from a discharge of potentially infectious fluids. People who wear plastic visors are also poorly protected from the coughs and sneezes of others.
However, full-face visors can offer increased eye and nose protection.
As such, they can be worn with a cloth or surgical mask as a complementary protective measure.