What this means for you, the driver.
Last month new drug-driving offences came into force which stem from recommendations from the North Review published in June 2010. This report looked in depth at how to improve the approach to detecting and prosecuting drug driving.
It is an offence to drive while under the influence of drugs under the Road Traffic Act 1988 and, if caught, the penalties are very similar to those for drink driving. Section 56 and Schedule 22 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013 introduced a new offence of driving while over a prescribed drug limit which came into force on March 2, 2015 in England (Scotland has not introduced this yet). And, like alcohol, drug driving can be enforced at the roadside with mobile testing equipment.
For those that take over the counter and prescription drugs, a ‘medical defence’ has been built into the legislation but there are concerns regarding this as it still remains to be seen as to how it will work in practice. Following the North Review, an expert panel led by Dr Kim Wolff made recommendations on the appropriate levels of drugs that should be proscribed for the drug drive limit. More information on this can be found on crimeline.info.
As experts in dealing with driving offences, if you’ve been effected by the new legislation, then get in touch.