We are specialist drug driving solicitors and are the leading experts in drug driving law. If you are being investigated for, or charged with, this offence, call our specialist team now for free initial advice on 01623 397200.
Which legislation covers drug driving offences?
The law covering drug driving is Section 5A of the Road Traffic Act 1988 Drug Driving – Driving or being in charge of a motor vehicle with concentration of specified controlled drug above specified level.
This legislation came into effect on 2 March 2015.
Why has the law changed to include drug driving as a separate offence?
As existing legislation – Section 4 of the Road Traffic Act 1988, ‘driving whilst unfit’ – was not proving effective in terms of its ‘impairment’ test for those who take drugs and then drive, new legislation was introduced with the aim of ensuring those who offend do not escape justice.
Which drugs are covered by the new legislation and what are the legal limits?
The Drug Driving (Specified Limits) (England and Wales) Regulations 2014 list the 17 drugs and the legal limits for each.
The list of drugs includes both illegal drugs and drugs which may have been medically prescribed.
A panel of experts has set these limits, following consideration of factors such as ‘accidental exposure’.
I have heard drug driving is a zero tolerance offence. Is this true?
In relation to illegal drugs it is effectively zero tolerance. Unlike drink driving where a level is set that reflects whether someone would be fit to drive in drug driving the level is very low.
What does the process of testing for drugs involve?
First of all, the police carry out a road side test, this is by way of a mouth swab that will indicate whether there are drugs present.
If this test gives a positive result, then you would be arrested and taken to the police station so that blood can be taken to be tested..
Is there a defence to a charge of drug driving?
There are a number of defences to drink driving. Depending on the type of drug you can show that you were prescribed the drug. If you can then show that you took them in as instructed then this would be a defence.
You can also challenge the blood taking procedure. If you were not driving or if you took the drugs after you drove then these are also defences.
Will I be disqualified for drug driving offences?
If you were driving, or attempting to drive the court has to disqualify you for a minimum of 12 months. If you were ‘in charge’ then the court can decide to give you 10 points rather than disqualify you. The length of the ban will depend on a number of factors such at the reading, the circumstances of the offence and your previous convictions.
What sentence will I get for Drug Driving?
This will also depend on a number of factors such as evidence of other drugs in your system, poor driving, location e.g. near school, carrying passengers.
We will work with you to make sure that the court also see the positive points such as your remorse and circumstances surrounding the offence.
There is guidance for the courts contained in the sentencing guidelines.
How can Drug Driving Solicitors help me?
We can make sure your case is presented in the best possible light so that the court see you as an individual and not just a number. We know the right things to say, and more importantly, what not to say. We can also advise you what evidence needs to be provided to best support your case. We have a very good record of getting reduced disqualifications. Our specialist drug driving solicitors represent clients in all courts across England and Wales and can see people face to face in Birmingham, Nottingham and London.
If you have been charged with a drug driving offence, call our drug driving solicitors today on
01623 600645 for free initial advice.