How Police Tackle Drug-Drivers on the Road: Tests, Penalties, and Powers

Drugs and drinking and driving kill or injure more people than one could ever imagine. Keep in mind that, in most cases, the drugged or drunk driver is alone in their car, whilst the vehicles they manage to hit can contain families, and so on. 

What’s worse is the fact that, in the past, the authorities didn’t have much power over what they could do when faced with someone drunk or drugged behind the wheel. In fact, some 20-30 years ago, the police didn’t have the authority and quick methods that they use now to identify drivers under the influence.

If you’re one of those thinking that they could end up in a drug-driving situation, here are the exact reasons why you should not!

Roadside Drug Test

First and foremost, it is worth mentioning that new technologies, such as the DrugWipe test, are doing a great job when it comes to detecting cocaine and cannabis only based on saliva. 

In very short terms, this means that, nowadays, a police officer can check if you took any drugs just as easily as they can check if you did actually enjoy a glass or two of wine before getting behind the wheel. 

Naturally, such tests steer clear of anything that’s legal, depending on the state, such as Joy Organics CBD products or pretty much anything that doesn’t contain THC. So, there’s no need to worry about those.

The Laws are There

Even though the police now have more ways to identify drugged and drunk drivers, it seems that the latter are not very much aware of how many things have changed in the past couple of years.

For instance, England’s authorities have caught as many as 25,000 drivers under the influence in the span of 3 years, with the annual number increasing every single year. Naturally, these are worrisome numbers, especially to those of us that prefer the pedestrian way of life. 

Given this, the authorities decided to implement more tests, adopt increased penalties, and provide officers in the field with more power when it comes to tackling drug-drivers.

Touch Your Nose vs. Roadside Drug Tests

Before roadside drug tests were invented, officers had to determine whether an individual was drunk or drugged by using the classic touch your nose test. Obviously, this test was subjective and allowed many officers to abuse their powers – and either wrongfully accuse someone or, naturally, take a bribe.

However, things have changed thanks to new testing methods. Here are the important points both drivers and officers need to know:

  • When a drug test is available on the roadside, it will be the only way to determine whether a driver is under the influence. The nose touch test is no longer viable in such conditions.
  • If the test turns out positive, the driver is then immediately taken to the station for a more in-depth and accurate blood test. The latter is the basis for legal prosecution, while the former is not so much.
  • At the same time, if a driver refuses to take the test, then they are immediately taken to the station as well. They are arrested and blood samples will be taken for testing as well.
  • The above applies mainly because, unlike alcohol, drugs stay in our bodies for much longer. If an officer suspects that a driver is drugged and the driver refuses to take the test, the officer is allowed to perform an arrest. 

As you can see, police officers now have more power when it comes to dealing with potential drugged drivers. As such, it is better not to take any chances.

Keeping Yourself Up to Date

One of the most common excuses of drug drivers is that they smoked two-three days ago and, on top of that, they didn’t even know that such tests were a legal thing.

As a law-abiding and responsible driver, you should always be up to date with what happens in the roadside police world, so to speak. You not only avoid a fine but also have the chance to stay out of prison. 

The Bottom Line

Police officers are always on the lookout for drugged drivers, even if they like it or not. While a high driver usually doesn’t run such a high accident risk, they are always a solid lead in cases of drug trafficking and other such offenses.

In short, even if you feel you are not dangerous to the other people on the road, you could still be pulled over – not only with the expectation to find drugs in the trunk of your car but also to remind you that testing for drugs in your system is legal and driving drugged is illegal.

Therefore, it is much better to rely on soothing and calming substances that are not illegal, such as green tea, incense sticks, or CBD, and the likes. If you wish to smoke, do so when you don’t plan on driving anywhere!

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