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Victoria first to screen drivers
    #3427337 - 11/30/04 12:32 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)


Screening ... the saliva tests detect cannabis and methamphetamine-based drugs.

Victoria first to screen drivers

VICTORIAN motorists will be the first in the world to be subjected to random roadside saliva testing for illegal drugs.

Police today said they expected to screen about 9,000 drivers in the 12-month drug testing trial, which starts on December 13.

The tests, which detect cannabis and methamphetamine-based drugs, aimed to cut down on the number of drug-affected motorists dying on the roads, Police Minister Andre Haermeyer said today.

"Drug driving can kill," he said. "Last year, a total of 31 per cent of motorists killed in Victoria tested positive to drugs other than alcohol."

News of the roadside tests came after a national survey revealed one in four men under the age of 25 said they had driven a car after taking an illicit drug.

The survey of about 2,000 drivers by car insurer AAMI also found 90 per cent of respondents supported the random testing of drivers for drugs such as ecstasy, cocaine, marijuana and speed.

Mr Haermeyer said initially people who attended nightclubs and dance parties would be the targets of the tests.

Those in the long-haul trucking industry taking drugs to meet deadlines would also be targeted.

Mr Haermeyer said police would initially operate one drug bus.

"As I say, this is a world first," he said. "We're not sort of diving in head first. We are treading fairly cautiously. Ultimately experience will tell us if we need more of these or not."

Motorists pulled over for a drug test will be required to place a small absorbent pad on their tongues for a few seconds.

They will then need to wait about five minutes before learning the result of the test, which does not detect the presence of prescription drugs or over-the-counter medications such as cold and flu tablets.

If they test positive for drugs, motorists will be taken inside a drug bus for a second test and asked to provide two more saliva samples.

One of the samples will be kept by the motorist, while the second will be used for further on-the-spot analysis.

A second positive test will be sent to a laboratory for verification.

People who return positive laboratory results will incur a $307 fine and lose three licence points.

If the offence progresses to court, the maximum penalty for a first offence will be $614 and a three-month licence cancellation.

Assistant Commissioner Bob Hastings said the trucking industry had reacted positively to news of the testing.

"We haven't had any backlash at all from the trucking community."

Drivers in other states will also soon face roadside drug testing, with police in Tasmania to be given the authority to carry out saliva-screening tests under legislation to be put to state parliament in its autumn session.

South Australia is also putting the plan before parliament next year.

Police in NSW will launch a 12-month trial of roadside drug testing in the second half of 2005 to assess the feasibility of introducing the tests permanently.


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Re: Victoria first to screen drivers [Re: motaman]
    #3427372 - 11/30/04 12:46 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

"Drug driving can kill," he said. "Last year, a total of 31 per cent of motorists killed in Victoria tested positive to drugs other than alcohol."

I wonder how many contained alohol exclusively.

Victoria Au, not Victoria BC right?


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Re: Victoria first to screen drivers [Re: blink]
    #3427416 - 11/30/04 01:05 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

> to be subjected to random roadside saliva testing for illegal drugs.

Wow... I wonder how long before they can force random door-to-door drug testing for illegal drugs... only a small step from random home searches for illegal drugs.

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Re: Victoria first to screen drivers [Re: Seuss]
    #3428818 - 11/30/04 06:36 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

pressing questions:

1) does this test if you're ON drugs at the time they stop you, or that you have recently take drugs, but are not high while you're driving, or both? There is a BIG difference.

2) with alcohol there is a tolerance level that is permitted while driving, will there be similar tolerances to these drugs they're testing for? how are they gonna set the tolerances? I'm guessing there won't be tolerances since they are testing for illegal drugs.

3) this is violating civil liberties, we are supposed to be free from unreasonable stops and searches. if they see you driving like a maniac and have evident reason to believe you're on drugs, then they can test you on the spot, otherwise this blatantly a violation of our liberties, and it's also discriminatory since they are focusing mainly on people under 25. Laws are not to be made and applied disciminatory to age and race among other things.

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Re: Victoria first to screen drivers [Re: chodamunky]
    #3445563 - 12/04/04 01:50 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I wanna know how far back these things go with marijuana. Cuz it will be bullshit if it can detect if u smoked marijuana more then a few hours ago.

This is the only time I really feel alive.

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Re: Victoria first to screen drivers [Re: baraka]
    #3515110 - 12/17/04 10:36 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

This page has a good FAQ about the testing...


They say that the testing will detect THC several hours after use and that meth* will be detected about 24 hours after use.

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