RIDING or driving while wearing earphones has been banned in France.

The new rules prohibit the use of any headset capable of emitting sound, including music and phone calls, with a penalty of a €135 (£95) fine and three licence points.  Exceptions include hands-free speakers that are fitted to the helmet and don’t go in the ear, which are still permitted according to the French news website Numerama.

Drivers can still make hands-free calls using systems that don’t involve a headset.   Hearing aids can still be worn and emergency services can still use hands-free headsets.  The rules were published by the French government at the beginning of July and are now in force.

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