Roadside drug testing will be introduced in Scotland on the 21st of October 2019, implementing the plans agreed by the Scottish government earlier this year.
Under the new laws, 17 drugs will now be controlled and drivers will be liable for prosecution if they are found to be under the influence of them whilst driving. One of the aims of the law is to catch drivers that have been using Cannabis or Cocaine, as it is these two drugs that are most often seen as being used by drug drivers.
The nationwide role out of the drug testing kits is part of the “Zero Tolerance” attitude being adopted by the administration in relation to drug driving in Scotland.
The roadside saliva drug test will inform officers within minutes if a driver that they have tested is under the influence of drugs. If that is the case, they can then be detained so that a further blood test can be taken to confirm the presence of any of the 17 restricted drugs of abuse.
Drugs that will be controlled under the new law include Amphetamines (Speed), Benzoylecgonine (the metabolite which your body breaks Cocaine down into), Cannabis, Ecstasy (MDMA), Heroin, Ketamine, LSD, Methamphetamine and Valium.
Each drug detected is a separate offence. This means an individual charge for each one.
Police estimate that dug drivers often combine drugs and that, 80% of the time, a positive drug test will come back showing two or more drugs being present.
The new roadside drug testing law reflects current legislation which is already implemented in England and Wales.
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