Roadside drug testing device developed by academics

A hand-held device which can detect whether a driver has taken drugs from the sweat on a finger has been developed by academics.

Invented by Intelligent Fingerprinting, a spin-off company at the University of East Anglia, the device is capable of detecting whether a motorist has taken cannabis, cocaine or heroin.

Currently anyone suspected of driving under the influence of drugs has to undergo a Field Impairment Test by the roadside.

This entails an officer asking the driver to carry out an array of co-ordination tests, such as standing on one leg. A motorist who fails is then take to the police station where a blood sample is taken which, if positive, is used as evidence in court.

In other parts of the world where roadside testing is already in place, the most common method relies on taking a saliva sample using a swab.

Full article see Telegraph

Motorists will have to carry a portable breathalyser in France

Drivers crossing the channel will have to carry a portable breath-testing kit to take their car to France.

New laws will make the equipment compulsory for all cars on French roads from July 1, with anyone caught without the equipment facing an 11 euro (£9.20) fine.

Around three million Britons a year take their car abroad and the new offence comes into force on July 1 as the holiday season approaches its height.

The kits, costing up to £2 are expected to be available at Channel ports and will enable motorists to see if they are under the French limit of 50 mg per 100ml of blood which is 30 mg lower than in the UK.

Any devices would have to comply with safety standards set by the French authorities.

It is the latest in a series of requirements imposed on drivers by the French Government. Motorists are also legally obliged to carry a warning triangle and fluorescent vest as well as displaying a GB plate and adjusting their headlights to avoid dazzling oncoming drivers.

Full article see Telegraph

Drug drivers face jail term under new laws

Ministers are acting to end the anomaly which requires police to prove that a motorist’s driving was impaired by drugs for a prosecution to succeed.

Drug driving will become a criminal offence punishable by up to six months in jail, under new laws to be unveiled this week.

The new offence will form part of the Queen's Speech and will be enforced by the introduction of “drugyalysers” – drug screening devices – which should be in place by the end of the year.

Full article see Telegraph

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