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How to deal with the impact of medicinal drug abuse on driver safety?
C 27989 (In: C 27945) /83 / ITRD E201165 (also at CD-ROM C 27890/C27945/C28028)
Walsh, J.M.
In: Alcohol, drugs and traffic safety : proceedings of the 16th ICADTS International Conference on Alcohol, Drugs and Traffic Safety T'2002, Montreal, Canada, August 4-9, 2002, Volume 2, p. 589-592, 7 ref.

Samenvatting Driving is a complex task requiring psychomotor skill, information processing, sound judgement and reaction time. Many prescribed medications affect the skills required for safe driving in a variety of ways. Recent driving research studies have indicated the increasing prevalence of prescribe medication in driving crashes 1,2,3,4,5,6,7. The benzodiazepines and amphetamines both alone and in combination with alcohol are most frequently cited. Generally when crashes occur these drugs are found to be present in levels far and above therapeutic doses indicating abuse of prescribed medications. Globally most countries attempt to deal with this problem through a variety of prevention strategies including public service advertising, package insert warnings, and pictographs that indicate a driving hazard. Only a few countries of the world [e.g. Belgium, Germany, Sweden] actually have laws that allow police officers to test for prescribed-medication drug abuse, and to prosecute drivers found to be under the influence of such drugs. Initial reports indicate these laws are working well and may be one effective way of dealing with the problem. Strategic policy ideas emanating from the ICADTS working group on illegal drugs and drug abuse will be discussed with regard to legislative, law-enforcement and research initiatives to better deal with drivers abusing prescribed medications. (Author/publisher) For the covering abstract of the conference see ITRD Abstract No. E201067.
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