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Suspected drug-drivers to be tested


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Suspected drug-drivers to be tested

Dec 13, 2006


Drivers suspected of taking illegal drugs will soon be forced to undertake a roadside test.


The Ministry of Transport has just released a new road safety policy statement and the government is aiming to align laws on drink-driving with drug-driving. It hopes to have a bill allowing tests introducbe introduced, ready to go to parliament in the second half of next year.


According to the Ministry of Transport, random drug testing will not be introduced, but they will be watching international developments in this area.


The test would be used only if police have ruled out the presence of alcohol, and if you fail you will be blood tested.


The tests are already being trialled but only on drivers who give their consent.


Concerns about potential breaches of civil liberties were expressed when a pilot scheme for drug testing of motorists was trialled in the South Island in 2004.


But Transport Minister Annette King says those concerns have to be weighed against the safety of other motorists.


She says innocent people have the right to travel without being faced by drivers under the influence of illegal drugs, and thereby causing accidents or deaths.


National roading police manager, Superintendent Dave Cliff, says there is a reasonable proportion of drivers who are using drugs.


"They're crashing vehicles. They're killing and they're also injuring other people. So government has now made a decision that they'll increase their ability to focus on drink-driving."


Last year 15 fatal crashes and another 40 crashes causing injury, were attributed to illegal drug use.


While that is only 4% of all crashes, the government says the toll must come down.


"Of course four percent are people. They are people's lives that are lost. They are people who end up in hospital," King says.


The penalties for those found driving on drugs will be aligned with alcohol offences. First and second time offenders will face being disqualified from driving for at least six months, a fine of up to $4,500 or three months imprisonment.


The government is targeting other drivers too. It is promising to introduce demerit points for those running red lights and not wearing seatbelts.


Demerit and fine regimes for speeding offences are also up for change. However demerit points will not be introduced for speed camera offences.


There is also consideration being given to changing the graduated license system by increasing the amount of supervised practice learner drivers go through before driving solo.


The penalties imposed on drivers who breach the conditions of the graduated system are also being looked at.


King says the graduated licensing system is being looked at with the emphasis on changing behaviour.


Source: One News/Newstalk ZB

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yeah i saw this shit.. i rekkon its bullshit eh.. lets say i just went swimming in a chlorine pool and had really red eyes but happened to have a tinny in my car, it would be bullshit for them to search me and find it just coz my eyes were red and they thought i was on drugs..


i mean, lets get real.. i woulda been getting stoned at the pool


but i still think this shit is just giving the cops more opportunity to finger fuck us all without valid reason for suspicion..


big brothers watching you beeyach!


hopefully the greens do something to protect my privacy!

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It's not so bad, just a sobriety test... if you can't walk in a straight line and whatever else simon says then you shouldn't be driving... sounds fair to me


If you're suspected of driving under the influence of an unidentified substance, it prolly doesn't mean you can be searched, however if you're unable to put together a sentence and you're obviously high as fuck the officer isn't going to HAVE to let you go... he can drag yo high ass away


That article you posted is an example why some people shouldn't be in media

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