UK drug driving campaign focuses on 'paranoia' effects

UK drug driving campaign focuses on 'paranoia' effects

Drink driving is a well documented cause with scientific backing on how alcohol impairs driving to a large extent. Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) is quite clear cut and now, drug driving is being given the same treatment in the UK. A new campaign by THINK! the road safety campaigning arm of the UK Department for Road Safety focuses on the effects of 'paranoia' on driving as well as the impairment effects of drug driving.


In the UK it is illegal to drive if your driving is impaired by drugs or if you have certain drugs above a specified level in your blood. If the police stop you and think you’re on drugs they will either test you at the roadside using a drug screening device or a "Field Impairment" test to assess your ability to drive.

If drugs are detected in your system or you are deemed impaired by drugs, you’ll be arrested and taken to a police station for blood or urine tests. If the tests show you've taken drugs or show a specified drug above the specified blood limits you could be charged with drug driving.

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You don't have to be on illegal drugs to be impaired to drive – prescription or over-the-counter medicines can also impair your ability to drive. If you’re taking medicines, talk to your doctor, pharmacist or healthcare professional before driving.

In the UK the penalties for drug driving are the same as for drink driving. If you are convicted you will receive:

  • A minimum 12-month driving ban
  • A criminal record
  • A fine of up to £5000 or up to 6 months in prison or both

It’s illegal to drive if either, you’re unfit to do so because you’re on legal or illegal drugs; you have certain levels of illegal drugs in your blood (even if they haven’t affected your driving).

alcohol man kit pic
Read about drink and drug driving in the Youth and Road Safety Action Kit.

Alcohol and drug consumption by road users results in a higher crash rate. These substances impact on human behaviour and judgment. No person is too skilled, too big, or too clever to avoid the effects.

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See the campaign video on Drug Driving





Read more about Drug Driving laws in the UK
Visit Think!
Read about Drink and Drug Driving in the Youth and Road Safety Action Kit