Call for more stringent drug driving laws receives support

Support or more stringent drug driving laws by Labour’s David Stewart receives Tory backing.

A LONG RUNNING campaign by regional Labour MSP David Stewart to force a new approach to drug driving in Scotland is now attracting cross-party support.

Mr Stewart, a renowned road safety campaigner, has spoken several times on insideMoray about his hopes that the Scottish Government would take seriously his pleas for legal limits to be set for driving while unfit through drugs.

Last month he called on the Justice Secretary to take action that matches that of other countries in the UK, where police are allowed to target drivers as a drug/driving limit has been set and drug testing kits are carried by police.

Now the Tory shadow cabinet secretary and fellow Highlands and Islands regional MSP, Douglas Ross, is calling for action on the same issue, pointing to the recent figures that show since drug driving limits were introduced in England two years ago there has been a four-fold increase in the number of drivers charged with the offence.

He said: “It’s wrong that Scotland is so far behind the curve, compared with the rest of the United Kingdom, on this important issue. The SNP knows that as a result of the changes in England and Wales, the number of motorists charged with drug driving rose significantly and convictions have increased.

“Those driving under the influence of drugs should not be anywhere near the wheel – they not only put their own safety at risk, but others too. The SNP’s sheer stubbornness is preventing Scotland from finding a way to deal with drug-driving in the best possible way.

“The evidence already exists that changes in England and Wales have had the desired effect and the SNP must act on this now.”