Expert panel will examine feasibility of setting levels for drug driving

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: (Published 06 January 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e73
  1. Jacqui Wise
  1. 1London

The UK government is putting together an expert panel to look at introducing a new law against taking drugs and driving.

The panel, set up by the Department of Transport, will look at how a specific drug driving offence could be defined and whether it is possible to set levels for the impairing effects of individual drugs.

This course of action was recommended in a 2010 review by the legal scholar Peter North (BMJ 2010;340:c3315, doi:10.1136/bmj.c3315). The review concluded that there is a substantial drug driving problem in the United Kingdom. There were 56 fatal and 207 serious injury incidents reported by police in 2008 as involving impairment by drugs, but the true scale of the problem is likely to be much greater.

The panel will examine whether it is possible to identify, for average members of the adult population, the levels of drugs that have an impairing effect …

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