The deadly coronavirus, since its outbreak, has claimed more than 500 lives in China’s Wuhan city. After it was reported that 3 people were also affected in India, an NGO – working on road safety – has asked the Hyderabad Police to stop using breathalysers to avoid spreading the virus.

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According to India Today, an NGO – named Vaada Foundation – sent a letter to the Hyderabad Police asking them to disband the use of breathalysers, which can spread the virus from one human to the other.

This came after the United Nations declared that good hand and respiratory hygiene can actually prevent others from contracting the virus. 


Airborne droplets and infected surfaces can easily be transferred to a healthy person from an infected person if the former uses the same breathalysers used by an infected body. 


P Suresh Raju, Vaada Foundation’s founder, believed using breathalysers in the current scenario is very unhygienic presenting a risk to both commuters as well as the police officers.   

But experts believed, keeping a check on drunk-driving incidents is also mandatory and said the need for alternatives is imminent. 

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While a few people suggested using disposable breathalysers, many believed changing attachments before re-use can enable the police department to cut down on this expense. 

KK Agarwal, former president of the Indian Medical Association (IMA), said: 

All respiratory instruments should be equipped with a hepa filter or they can use disposable instruments with droplet precautions. A person with flu standing 3 feet away from the person who is testing him can pass the infection. The best practice for the traffic cops will be to wear disposable gloves and masks.
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Manjeetha Nath Das, Senior Internal Medical Consultant for Columbia Asia Hospital, echoed the NGO founder’s sentiments and said:

Breathing in breathalysers can potentially cause various communicable diseases to people with weak immunity. The attachments should be sterilised and cleaned before using it for the next person.

All three confirmed coronavirus cases in India have been detected in Kerala, leading to a “state calamity” declaration by the authorities. 

Since then, severe measures have been taken by the authorities to control the outbreak.