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HOT TOPICS: Drug and Alcohol Treatment  Heroin

Saliva Swab Tests Could Detect High Drivers

A New York State Senator backs law to develop a roadside test for high drivers.

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Saliva tests like this could be at the roadside
soon. Photo via

By McCarton Ackerman

01/31/12

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New York State Senator Chuck Schumer announced Sunday that he's sponsoring legislation that would provide $140 million in National Highway Transportation Safety Administration funding to create "saliva swab tests" for cops to catch drivers under the influence of drugs. There are currently no roadside tests to detect high drivers in the same way that breathalyzers do for drunk drivers. "If people next year knew that they’d be tested for drugged driving just like they are tested for drunk driving, it might deter them from doing it to begin with and save lives," says Schumer. Some of the requested funding would also go towards state grants to train cops to recognize signs of drug use in drivers. Schumer's tough stance on drugs has previously been displayed in pushing for tighter restrictions on prescribed narcotics and an attempt to block super-painkiller Zohydro. Arrests for drugged driving in NY have risen by 35% over the last decade, while more people in the US die from drug-related causes than traffic accidents each year.

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