Friday 6 December 2019

Attitudes to drug-driving present big challenge

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A Model Does a pupil Dilation test in front of (L to r) RSA Chairperson Liz O Donnell, Prof Denis Cusack Director of medical bureau of road safety, Garda commissioner Noirin o Sullivan, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Paschal Donohoe T.D, RSA CEO Moyagh Murdock at the launch of the RSA Garda Christmas and New Year Road Safety Campaign. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
A Model Does a pupil Dilation test in front of (L to r) RSA Chairperson Liz O Donnell, Prof Denis Cusack Director of medical bureau of road safety, Garda commissioner Noirin o Sullivan, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Paschal Donohoe T.D, RSA CEO Moyagh Murdock at the launch of the RSA Garda Christmas and New Year Road Safety Campaign. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Paul Melia

Paul Melia

The stark warning that illegal drugs could become as big a risk as drink driving should send a shudder through every law-abiding motorist.

The revelation that cannabis and other drugs played a role in the death of 10pc of all motorists in Co Kildare is only one part of the story.

Professor Denis Cusack, from the Medical Bureau of Road Safety, notes that separate studies suggest one in three motorists who passed a drink-driving test were found to have consumed drugs.

Policing this is very difficult, but gardai are good at detecting issues. Worryingly, attitudes leave a lot to be desired.

A survey from the Road Safety Authority (RSA) of 1,000 people aged 17 to 34 found that one in 20 had driven under the influence. As RSA chairman Liz O'Donnell notes: "Many drug drivers see little risk of apprehension. They can delude themselves into thinking they are better drivers and at a lower risk of collision, and overestimate their driving confidence."

For the second year in a row, the number of fatal collisions is expected to increase. Driving a car is complicated enough without the added complication of being high. How many lives must be lost before people heed the message?

Indo Motoring

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