New figures on drugged driving deaths: Brake reaction

Brake, the road safety charity is supporting the AA's calls for roadside drug-screening devices to be used by Police, following the release of statistics showing the extent of drug driving in fatal crashes.

Caroline Perry, Brake's NZ director said: "These figures are extremely concerning. We know drug driving is a significant problem; this data further shows the extent of the issue and that we need to do much more to address it. We want to see an increase in enforcement and the use of roadside drug-screening devices, to catch drugged drivers and deter people from drug driving.

"Drugs affect your coordination and reactions, seriously affecting your ability to drive. We urge people to never mix drugs and driving, it can easily be a lethal combination."

Roadside testing for drugs has been proven to work overseas in countries such as Australia and the UK. Following the introduction of a law in March 2015 allowing police to test and arrest in England and Wales for certain illegal and legal drugs, there was an 800% increase in arrests, despite limitations in testing equipment and levels of policing. [1]

[1], Drug drive arrests on the rise, February 2016

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