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Random roadside drug testing: A study into the prevalence of drug driving in a sample of Queensland motorists

Davey, Jeremy D. & Freeman, James E. (2007) Random roadside drug testing: A study into the prevalence of drug driving in a sample of Queensland motorists. In 14th International Conference of Road Safety on Four Continents, 14th International Conference of Road Safety on Four Continents, Bangkok, Thailand.

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Abstract

Random road-side drug testing is becoming increasingly prevalent in a number of Australian states and overseas jurisdictions. This paper outlines research conducted to provide an estimate and comparison of the extent of drug driving in a sample of Queensland drivers in regional and metropolitan areas. Oral fluid samples were collected from 781 drivers who volunteered to participate at Random Breath Testing (RBT) sites in a large Queensland regional area. Illicit substances tested for included cannabis (delta 9 tetrahydrocannibinol [THC]), amphetamine type substances, heroin and cocaine. Drivers also completed a self-report questionnaire regarding their drug-related driving behaviour. Samples that were drug-positive at initial screening were sent to a government laboratory for confirmation. Oral fluid samples from 27 participants (3.5%) were confirmed positive for at least one illicit substance. The most common drugs detected in oral fluid were cannabis (delta 9 THC) (n = 13) followed by amphetamine type substances (n = 11). A key finding was that cannabis was also confirmed as the most common self-reported drug combined with driving and that individuals who tested positive to any drug through oral fluid analysis were also more likely to report the highest frequency of drug driving. Furthermore, a comparison between drug vs drink driving detection rates for the study period revealed a higher detection rate for drug driving (3.5%) vs drink driving (0.8%). This research provides evidence that drug driving is relatively prevalent on Queensland roads, and may in fact be more common than drink driving. The paper will further outline the study findings and present possible directions for future drug driving research.

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ID Code: 11583
Item Type: Conference Paper
Additional Information: For more information, please refer to the publisher's website (see hypertext link) or contact the author.
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Alcohol Use, Drug Use, Drink Driving, Drug Driving
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > CRIMINOLOGY (160200)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > TRANSPORTATION AND FREIGHT SERVICES (150700) > Road Transportation and Freight Services (150703)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2007 (please consult author)
Deposited On: 10 Jan 2008
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:37

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