Zero tolerance to drug driving will make it as anti social as drink driving, say the TTC Group, a pioneer of education for drink drive offenders.
The TTC Group, a leader in road safety education, is a “flagship” provider of the drink drive rehabilitation course which they first trialled in the early 1990’s.
Specialist consultants on both alcohol and drug driving, the TTC Group is preparing an education course for drug drivers, similar to the drink drive course.
“We don't know yet if a course similar to the Drink Drive Rehabilitation Scheme will be offered to people convicted of drug driving but we are preparing for it,” said MD Des Morrison.
“We were one of the first to trial the drink drive course more than 20 years ago which has been proven to be a success with independent research showing that reconviction rates have reduced by a half for those who attend.
He welcomed the new law due to be introduced on March 2 which will make it an offence to drive above a specified limit for particular drugs.
Before police had to prove that a motorist was “impaired” by drugs.
“It will make it easier to tackle drug driving which the Department of Transport estimates leads to 200 deaths each year,” said Mr Morrison, whose 250 trainers educate 300,000 motorists nationwide each year to reduce road casualties.
“We have been campaigning for years for action to be taken against those whose driving is impaired by drugs and this new law will make our roads safer.
“Drug driving will become as anti social as drink driving is now.” The limits for illegal drugs will mean that anyone taking “a puff” of cannabis will be over the limit.
Cannabis is known to slow reaction times, cause blurred vision and a low attention span. Cocaine users are also a danger on the roads with the drug leading to speeding and aggressive driving and poor vehicle control.
LSD distorts the senses, causes hallucinations, a feeling of detachment for 12 hours with anxiety and flashbacks occurring days and weeks later.
Ecstacy and heroin are also on the zero tolerance list. Higher limits have been set for people taking prescription drugs.
Those who take medicines as prescribed by their doctor and whose driving is not impaired will not break the law. If their driving is impaired they will have a statutory medical defence.
But if they are unfit to drive they can be prosecuted under the current offence of driving whilst unfit through drink or drugs.
Praised by Investors in Excellence for being “passionate” about road safety, the TTC Group educate people about the dangers of drug driving involving illicit and prescription medicines.
They are the largest provider of courses for the National Driver Offender Retraining Scheme (NDORS), an educational alternative to prosecution for some road traffic offences.
Courses are also run for professional LGV drivers and the corporate sector as well as help for local authority road safety teams. They also teach cycle and pedestrian safety for adults and children.