The law has been rightly harsh on drink drivers for some years now but what about those irresponsible motorists who drive while under the influence of drugs?
At the moment the situation is that the prosecution lawyers need to prove that the drugs impaired the driver’s ability to get around safely. That is about to change though, with the Crime, Communications and Court Bill on its way.
The new legislation will ensure that both illegal drugs and prescription medicines are covered, and that motorists can be arrested if they fail the new drugyalyser test, which is like a standard breath test for alcohol levels, and is designed to detect the most common types of drug.
I have never driven after drinking (although one of my worst ever performances at Super Hang On came after a few tipples) and I wouldn’t know an illegal drug if I fell over it. However, on a more serious note, I have driven after taken a fair amount of medicine and it wasn’t a pleasant experience.
They say that you shouldn’t drive, operate heavy machinery or watch daytime TV after taking certain medicines but I had always thought that it was a bit of an exaggeration. Having completely forgot about my earlier experience with a ZX Spectrum and a bottle of cheap cider I decided to make the trip home in my car.
Even Rock the Casbah Didn’t Help
My eyes started getting heavy and even winding down the window and putting The Clash on the radio didn’t help me. It is probably the closest I have ever come to crashing. Apart from the time I crashed, of course.
To sum up, anything which can help make people realise that this kind of thing is dangerous has got to be a good thing. The new laws will give drivers up a year’s ban and a fine of up to £5,000, so there really is no excuse for ignoring them.