Officers will be targeting drug-drivers as part of a new campaign to educate road users on the dangers of getting behind the wheel while under the influence of illegal substances.
The force’s ‘Do Not Drug Drive’ campaign will run from 15 August to 28 August and will be aimed at educating 18-28 year-olds on the serious risks and impact of drug-driving on themselves, other road users and their friends and family.
It comes as, since 1 July 2021, there have been more than 340 drug-driving related arrests across Staffordshire.
Half of those arrested were aged 18-28.
Throughout the campaign, officers will use their powers to conduct roadside drug tests during routine patrols.
Sergeant Anthony McKenzie, of the Roads Policing Unit at Staffordshire Police, said: “We will be stopping motorists and carrying out the roadside drug tests so we can make sure all drivers are keeping themselves and others as safe from harm as possible.
“These operations will not just be at night, they will also be run in the mornings and throughout the day.
“Unfortunately, many people mistakenly think that if they sleep and eat and drink after taking drugs, that they will be fit to drive. This is not the case.
“The best advice is not only not to take the drugs in the first place but also do not drive afterwards.
“It is not only irresponsible and against the law, but the real consequences wrecks lives and families. That family could be yours. All too often officers have to tell families that their loved ones have been seriously injured or even died as a result of a collision.
“Is taking drugs really worth badly injuring or killing someone?
“If drivers are found drug driving, they could find themselves facing up to six months in prison, a fine, a minimum 12-month ban from driving, a criminal record and an endorsement on their driving license for 11 years.
“The devastation caused by someone who has got behind the wheel after taking drugs should be unacceptable to all road users.
“That’s why during this campaign, I want to send a clear message - if you take drugs and drive then there is a high likelihood that you will be stopped by officers and you will be caught - before you seriously hurt yourself or others.”
If you have concerns about anyone you believe drives whilst under the influence of drugs, please contact police on 101.
Alternatively, contact the independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through their Anonymous Online Form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.
For more information, visit Road Safety on the Staffordshire Police website.