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Birmingham City Council

Drugs and Driving

Drugs can  affect driver judgement, coordination and vehicle control.

Whilst the dangers of drink-driving are well known, people are less aware of the risks of driving when impaired through drugs.


Drug

Effect relevant to driving

Cannabis

Slower reaction time, memory problems, impaired steering control, coordination

Opiates

Slower reaction time, impaired coordination, lethargy, sleepiness

Cocaine

Increased risk taking, over confidence, sever fatigue the following day

Amphetamines

Increased risk taking, over confidence, sever fatigue the following day

Ecstasy

Increased risk taking, over confidence, sever fatigue the following day


Driving a vehicle requires skill, concentration and alertness at all times. As most medicines and drugs have both a physical and psychological effect on the taker the risk of having a road accident is greatly increased.


Driving or riding any vehicle while under the influence of these substances is not only illegal but can result in tragedy.


Many drugs and medicines cause drowsiness and this is a significant contributor to road accidents. No one should ever drive after an anaesthetic as it can take 24 hours for the effects to wear off. Beware too of mixing medicines. Always get advice from your doctor or local pharmacist about the effects of drugs and medicines.


For more information visit the DfT website at www.dft.gov.uk/think/drugdrive/

For further information contact the Road Safety Education Team on 0121 303 7683.