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Drivers risk losing licence if they refuse breath test amid pandemic

Victoria Police says motorists who refuse to undergo roadside breath testing during the COVID-19 outbreak face licence cancellations and hefty fines, after the force sought expert medical advice surrounding the potential risk of virus transmission.

In an announcement on Wednesday morning, the force warned it was against the law to refuse a preliminary breath test, adding officers were taking extra precautions during the COVID-19 outbreak to keep people safe.

A Victoria Police breath testing device.

A Victoria Police breath testing device.Credit:Aaron Sawall

A police spokesman said new straws and gloves would be used during each test and machines would also be disinfected after every use.

Victoria Police wants to make it very clear that the exposure risk to coronavirus from a PBT [preliminary breath test] machine is no different to going about your daily life in the community. Expert medical advice has been sought and Victoria Police has been reassured that it is safe for people to participate in a PBT,” they said.

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