Following a campaign run by the Croydon Advertiser and the family of a girl killed by a drug-driver, Prime Minister David Cameron has promised to make drug-driving laws stronger and to introduce stringent roadside drug-testing by police.
The newspaper and the Groves family campaigned to introduce 'Lillian's Law' after 14-year-old Lillian was knocked down and killed by a motorist who was high on cannabis. Three months after the campaign's launch, the family were invited to Downing Street to speak with the Prime Minister.
Mr Cameron admitted that the current laws are "all wrong" and described the Government's plans to create a new motoring offence which would make it illegal to drive under the influence of drugs above a certain limit.
Currently, police must prove a suspected driver's impairment by using old-fashioned tests of balance and co-ordination. But Mr Cameron wants to ensure that drug analysers are installed in all police cars.
He also feels that adopting a zero tolerance approach that forces an instant driving ban if a motorist is caught with illegal substances in their blood, regardless of the amount, could be feasible.
Mr Cameron said "We need to get away from impairment. The impairment test is all wrong. It allows you to be a drug taker who is driving and that's not on.
"Your proposal is to have a new offence of driving under the influence of drugs, rather than what we have got at the moment which is if you commit a crime then drug taking can be a part of the offence.
"Yours is a more logical approach and I think we need to go back and re-examine."
When Lillian Groves was killed, the police on the scene did not have adequate roadside testing equipment and were unable to test the driver until nine hours after the incident.
As a result, the driver was not found to be under the influence of drugs and was charged with a far less serious offence than he should have been. He was sentenced to eight months, reduced by half for a guilty plea.
Mr Cameron said that he will push for police to more roadside drug analysing equipment. He said: "It's just like the breathalyser really. It's incredibly simple and should be in every police car.
"I admit it's taken too long. We're going to give it a big shunt and get them into police stations as fast as possible because I think that will make a difference."
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