The AA has welcomed plans by the Government to introduce a new offence of driving or being in charge of a motor vehicle with a specified controlled drug in the body.

The new offence is included in the Crime and Courts Bill, currently before Parliament, and the Government has published findings from its panel of medical and scientific experts providing technical advice on drugs to potentially be covered by the new offence.

Edmund King, AA president, said: “The AA has been campaigning for five years to tighten up enforcement of drug driving. Official figures suggest there are approximately 200 drug-related deaths on our roads each year but we believe that the figure is much higher as victims aren’t always routinely checked for drugs after crashes.

The AA held a round table with the Home Office, police, Department for Transport, and medical and addiction experts on this issue in 2008 so is pleased to see progress at last.”