A new national campaign is urging people to speak up about regular drug drivers to help prevent potentially fatal collisions from happening.
The campaign has been launched by Crimestoppers, in partnership with D.tec International, in a bid to target the ‘rising threat’ of drug driving.
Statistics show there has been a 110% increase in the number of drug driving reports Crimestoppers has passed on to police forces over the last three years.
Between April 2020 and March 2021, Crimestoppers sent 10,580 reports to the police, compared to 5,028 between April 2018 and March 2019.
Meanwhile, D.tec International, which supplies drug detection kits to police forces, says there have been significant increases in arrests for drug driving in some areas, including north west England.
The four-week campaign highlights how drug drivers put not only their own, but other people’s lives at risk.
Crimestoppers is urging people to speak up about regular drug drivers, by providing the following information:
- Who the person is and what they look like?
- Where do they take drugs and how often do they do it?
- What type of drug or drugs they are taking regularly
- Where and when are they driving?
- The offender’s vehicle make and registration number
Mick Duthie, director of operations at Crimestoppers, said: “Often the victims of road traffic collisions are passengers in cars driven by those under the influence of drugs, so community intelligence is vital to helping keep our streets safe.
“This appeal and campaign to raise awareness will help tackle the false belief that it’s only drink drivers who can be easily detected. We aim to discourage those who may be thinking of getting behind the wheel, and ensure that they think about the implications of their actions on themselves, their families and the loved ones of potential victims.
“Since we began in the late 1980s, we’ve always kept our promise of anonymity to everyone who does the right thing and contacts us.”
D.tec International supplies the disposable drug detection device, DrugWipe, which is used for roadside driver drug screening by all 43 police forces across the UK.
Ean Lewin, managing director of D.tec International, said: “It took several decades for society to accept that drink driving is a significant problem and even today this careless and selfish act continues to kill or seriously injure innocent lives.
“Drug driving has grown in the dark and is now a significant and rapidly growing problem across the UK. Since it was introduced as an offence six years ago, only now is the scale of the problem becoming apparent with two to three times more arrests than drink driving in some parts of the UK.
“As police forces across England, Wales and Scotland begin to release statistics for the first week of their annual Christmas drink and drug drive campaign, the numbers demonstrate an increase on last year and the pre-Covid year before that. The facts speak for themselves – this is an horrendous situation and more must be done to address it.”
Anyone with information about regular drug drivers is asked to complete Crimestoppers’ simple and secure anonymous online form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org or alternatively call the charity’s UK Contact Centre on freephone 0800 555 111.