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Drug - Driving - Wrecks Lives

Although drink-driving has been the scourge of Garda, motorists and pedestrians alike for many years - it seems there is a very worrying increase in another risky practice - drug-driving.

It has been around for years but it seems that it´s becoming more and more common amongst young drivers.

One of the main problems of catching drug drivers, is that unlike alcohol, it isn´t always apparent that the driver is under the influence. It also depends on what drugs have been taken. For the Garda  enforce the law they have to reply on a physical assessments done on the spot.

The Law

The law is quite clear. Under the Road Traffic Act 1994, driving under the influence of an intoxicant is illegal. An intoxicant includes alcohol and drugs. Drivers on long-term medication (and those suffering from certain conditions) require certification from their doctor that they are capable of driving, so that a licence can be issued. But of course after that, the responsibility largely rests with the driver to be careful and sensible, recognising especially that mixing alcohol with prescribed medication can be lethal.

Drugs can affect your driving in the following ways:

  • Slower reaction times
  • Poor concentration
  • Sleepiness/fatigue
  • Confused thinking
  • Distorted perception
  • Over confidence,so you take unnecessary risks
  • Impaired co-ordination
  • Erratic behaviour
  • Nausea
  • Hallucinations
  • Blurred vision/enlarged pupils
  • Aggression
  • Panic attacks and paranoia
  • Tremors
  • Dizziness
  • Cramps