The consequences of drug driving will be highlighted across the county as part of a THINK! campaign starting on Monday (February 1).
In March last year the law changed to make it easier to prosecute those exceeding set limits and the introduction of roadside test kits has helped officers identify people driving under the influence of drugs. The legislation covers some prescribed drugs as well as illegal substances.
The two-month campaign will take place in Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire, with officers from the Road Policing Unit conducting an increased number of checks in an effort to stop drug drivers.
The Department for Transport estimates that drug impaired driving resulted in 141 deaths and 651 serious injuries in 2014.
The penalties for drug driving are the same as those for drink driving. If convicted, motorists could lose their licence, be fined up to £5,000 and even face a prison sentence.
The campaign key messages include:
. A change in the law has made it easier to prosecute those driving under the influence of drugs.
. Those who drug drive not only put their life at risk, but also the lives of others.
. One of your loved ones could be an innocent victim of a drug driver. Call our confidential phone line to report a drug driver.
. The penalties are the same as for drink driving. You will lose your licence, could face a fine and even a prison sentence.
. Limits are set on some prescription drugs – always read the label.
Inspector Phil Bloor said: “Driving under the influence of drugs is completely unacceptable and can have tragic consequences. Even small traces of certain substances can have an impact on someone’s ability to drive and significantly increases the chance of being involved in a collision.”
For more information on drug driving, including a list of prescribed substances in the legislation, visit the Cambridgeshire police website.