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UK McDonald’s to start breathalyzer tests for customers

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A McDonald's location in England is trying to curtail unruly drunk behavior by breathalyzing people before entering. (Reuters)

A U.K. McDonald’s will start to implement breathalyzer tests for customers who want to eat inside the restaurant.  

In an effort to cut down on drunk patrons, the fast food chain will make customers blow into the machine --which measures blood alcohol content--  at a Cambridge franchise that is open 24 hours, reports The Daily Mirror.

Anyone who blows twice the legal driving limit—about .08 in the U.K. (which is similar to the legal limit in the U.S.)—will be denied entry. Soft drink bottles and canned drinks will also be inspected for hidden alcohol.

“We want people to enjoy themselves, not have their night ruined,” local police told the Mirror. Anyone turned away will be given an informational leaflet on the dangers of excessive drinking.

The Cambridge McDonald’s is located close to many bars and clubs, making it a “hotspot” for local students and party-goers. 

Local council members are backing McDonald's latest effort to curtail excessive alcohol consumption in the city.  Over 140 people were arrested and charged with drunk and disorderly conduct in Cambridge in 2014. 

In March last year, a woman was reportedly punched inside the Cambridge McDonald’s by another customer, before being accosted with racial slurs.

But not everyone thinks this is a good idea. 

“This new measure is a flagrant and horrific violation of our human rights,” Cambridge's Trinity College student Declan Amphlett told his school paper.  “We’ll have to resort to smuggling sandwiches into clubs like a really primary school version of the drugs trade.”

McDonald's restaurants in the U.S.have its share of unruly customers, as well. In April, a McDonald’s employee in East Lansing, Michigan resorted to physical measures to subdue an unruly customer—also believed to be drunk—with a knockout punch.