UK drivers to face French roadside drug tests

14.10 | 29 July 2009 | | 2 comments

UK drivers could face a roadside saliva drug test if they are caught not wearing a seat belt or speeding in France.

The initiative is part of a campaign by French authorities to reduce the country’s heavy road casualty toll by taking a more aggressive stance against driving while under the influence of illegal drugs.

However, with the latest British Crime Survey showing that 1 in 20 of 16-59 year olds have used cannabis in the last month, this could leave many Brits on a collision course with France’s policy of zero tolerance towards any trace of illegal narcotics.

Andrew Howard, the AA’s head of road safety, said: "UK drivers who take drugs days or even weeks before driving though France and other parts of Europe are taking a high-stakes gamble.

"Unlike the UK, where drivers have to be impaired, the French approach is to prosecute simply for having traces of illegal drugs in the body. In fact, the official French wording suggests a driver could be tested at the discretion of a gendarme anytime after a road safety offence."

Click here to read the full AA news release.


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    My evidence shows that drug driving is actually a huge problem in this country. Bigger than those in power would care to admit. We need to wake up and tackle it now, before it becomes too big to tackle. well done France!

    J Shak, Durham
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    ……….and here in the UK no ACPO approved roadside drugalyser! Think it is time we caught up with France and Germany.

    Liz, London
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