It is against the law to drive under the influence of illegal drugs, or if you have certain drugs above a specified level in your blood.
Similar to drink driving, the police have a roadside test that makes it easier to detect those who are driving under the influence of illegal drugs.
If you are caught and convicted, you could face a driving ban, large fine and a prison sentence.
Changes to the drug driving law
On 2 March 2015, the drug driving law changed to make it easier for the police to catch and convict drug drivers.
It is now an offence to drive with any of 17 controlled drugs above a specified level in your blood. This includes illegal and medical drugs. The limits set for each drug is different, and for illegal drugs the limits set are extremely low, but have been set at a level to rule out any accidental exposure (i.e from passive smoking).
It’s illegal in England and Wales to drive with legal drugs in your body if it impairs your driving.
It’s an offence to drive if you have over the specified limits of certain drugs in your blood and you haven’t been prescribed them.
Talk to your doctor about whether you should drive if you’ve been prescribed any of the following drugs:
amphetamine, eg dexamphetamine or selegiline
morphine or opiate and opioid-based drugs, eg codeine, tramadol or fentanyl
You can drive after taking these drugs if:
you’ve been prescribed them and followed advice on how to take them by a healthcare professional
they aren’t causing you to be unfit to drive even if you’re above the specified limits