Police catch 37 drug drivers in Norfolk and Suffolk

Police catch 37 drug drivers in Norfolk and Suffolk

11:09 02 March 2016

Jessica Long 1

Police Catch 37 Drug Drivers In Norfolk And Suffolk

Police Officers. Picture: James Bass.

Archant Norfolk Photographic 2011

A new roadside drugs test kit has helped police in Norfolk and Suffolk catch 37 drug drivers in just two months.

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In Norfolk and Suffolk during December 91 drug tests were conducted with 28 positive tests, and in January 2016 – 67 drug tests were conducted with nine positive tests.

It comes after new legislation introduced this time last year made it illegal to drive with certain drugs above a certain level in the blood, even if you re not unfit to drive. The law allows officers to carry out roadside tests on drivers suspected of being under the influence of cannabis or cocaine by testing a saliva swab. Chief Inspector Kristin Barnard, the new head of the Norfolk and Suffolk Roads Policing Unit, said: Although we are only seeing a minority of drivers in the counties driving under the influence of drugs, it is still putting other road users at risk of a serious collision or even fatality.

Any amount of drug, whether it is prescribed or illegal can impair your ability to drive and decrease your reaction times. The new laws have made it easier for officers to tackle drug drivers, because there is a prescribed legal limit for substances. Along with the roadside drug tests, it allows both Suffolk and Norfolk Police to deal with offenders more effectively.

It is therefore essential that drivers read the instructions of any prescription medication before getting behind the wheel. Some prescribed drugs are also included in the legislation as certain medicines affect your ability to drive. Eight medicines which are sometimes abused are also included in the new law with limits set high to reflect their use as medicines.

The medicines are Morphine, Diazepam, Clonazepam, Flunitrazepam, Lorazepam, Oxazepam, Tempazepam and Methadone.

Norfolk Police and Crime Commissioner, Stephen Bett said of the legislation: Anything that makes our roads safer has to be a good thing and the new laws have made it easier for officers to tackle drivers under the influence of drugs and deal with offenders in the most effective way.

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  1. ^ Jessica Long (www.edp24.co.uk)
  2. ^ Stephen Bett (www.edp24.co.uk)
  3. ^ Norfolk Police (www.edp24.co.uk)

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