Over half of drivers tested for drugs in South Yorkshire found with cocaine and cannabis in system

Half of all drivers tested for drugs in South Yorkshire over the last 12 months had cocaine, cannabis or both in their systems new figures reveal.

Tuesday, 1st March 2016, 1:14 pm
Updated Tuesday, 1st March 2016, 1:16 pm
Police have carried out 525 drug tests over the last year

Officers carried out 525 roadside drug tests in the first year after new laws were introduced to tackle drug driving last March.

Of those tested, 57 per cent tested positive.

Chief Inspector Glen Suttenwood, Head of Roads Policing for South Yorkshire Police, said: “In the last year since the new law came into effect, officers have conducted 525 roadside drug tests on drivers in South Yorkshire, with 57 per cent producing positive results for cannabis or cocaine, or in 22 of the cases, both.”

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Last March drug driving became punishable in the same way as drink driving.

Roadside drugs kits are used by officers if they suspect a driver may have drugs in their system.

The kits highlight within minutes whether a driver has cannabis or cocaine in their system, resulting in them being arrested and taken into custody for a blood sample to be taken.

A new campaign has been launched to raise awareness of drug driving laws.

“Our aim with the campaign is for drivers to understand the implications of driving under the influence of drugs and to raise awareness that drug driving now carries exactly the same penalties and consequences of drink-driving - banned for a minimum of a year, a criminal record, a fine and potentially up to six months in prison,” added Chf Insp Suttenwood.

Call 101 to report offenders.