A Bill to bolster Police’s ability to tackle drug driving has been lodged as a Members Bill by National MP for Wairarapa Alastair Scott.
“Too many fatal crashes involving drugs have highlighted the need to crack down on those who get behind the wheel while under the influence of illegal substances,” says Alastair.
“That’s why I’ve lodged the Land Transport (Random Oral Fluid Testing) Amendment Bill to establish an effective Police roadside testing regime to better deal with drug driving."
Similar to mobile random breath testing for alcohol, drivers may be stopped by a Police officer at anytime, anywhere in the country and be tested for cannabis, MDMA and methamphetamine.
“At a time where the roads are heavy with traffic from holidaymakers returning home and tourists making the most of the New Zealand summer, the risk of drug-impaired drivers causing serious injury or fatal crashes increases significantly," says Alastair.
“The current law doesn’t do enough to deter drug-impaired people from getting behind the wheel – Police must have good cause to suspect that a driver is impaired by drugs before requiring them to stop and take a behavioural test, like walking heel to toe in a straight line."
Alastair says police roadside testing is a much stronger and more visible drug driving enforcement measure which will help deter people from driving while under the influence of drugs.
He says it will also improve Police’s ability to catch those who do before they cause a crash.
“With advances in technology over recent years making roadside testing for drugs much more practical, now is the right time to introduce it.
“My Bill will help to ensure greater road safety and reduce the number of crashes caused by drug driving. I look forward to it being pulled from the ballot.”