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Paris commuters, many of them forced to leave their cars at home, rode public transit for free today after France clamped down for the first time on driving as part of new anti-pollution measures to combat heavy smog.

The smog triggered a maximum level-3 alert Tuesday, meaning only private vehicles with odd-numbered license plates were allowed on roads today -- barring about 1 million of the estimated 3 million vehicles that enter Paris daily.

Taxis, buses, commercial vehicles and car pools with three or more people were exempted.

That didn't stop many drivers from breaking the law, causing a nearly two-mile traffic jam as police handed out tickets near Orly Airport south of Paris. Motorists faced a $150 fine, though most drivers were getting only warnings on the first day of the clampdown.

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