News in Niagara

Educating people about drugged driving

11/26/2012

There is another deadly menace wreaking havoc on Canadian roads these days, it is called "drugged driving".

This year the Canadian Safety Council is hoping to educate and raise awareness to the dangers of driving under the influence of drugs.

Catherine Benesch spokesperson with the council says impairment behind the wheel is most often associated with alcohol but one in three fatalities on our roads today, are caused by driving under the influence of drugs.

Benesch says getting the "don't drink and drive" message is important but being impaired by drugs is almost as big, if not a bigger problem than driving drunk.

The council says that among fatally injured drivers 55 and older, drug use is more prevalent than alcohol.

Drugs are also harder to detect at police checkpoints because there is no test for counting levels, therefore people often mix alcohol with drugs to avoid blowing over during a a breathalyzer test.

The good news is that there are now roughly 491 drug recognition experts (DRE) in Canada who exclusively work to enforce penalties for driving under the influence of drugs.

The Canadian Safety Council recommends you do not combine drugs with alcohol, know the side effects of your medications, be aware that drugs interact with each other, never drive while impaired and report impaired driving to police this holiday season.

National Safe Driving Week runs from December 1st to 7th.

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