A survey of 2,028 drivers conducted in March 2023 reveals almost a third (28%) of those aged 16-24 have themselves driven under the influence of illegal drugs or been a passenger inside a vehicle where the driver has taken illegal drugs within the 24-hour period beforehand. DVLA licensing data1 shows that approximately 2.5 million driving licences belong to this age group which when extrapolated to match the survey figures equates to up to 700,000.
The research also found more than a third (32%) believe it’s more common to drive under the influence of illegal drugs than drink driving.
More positively, over two-thirds (69%) of this age group would be likely to stop others under the influence from driving. However, almost a fifth (19%) of young drivers are unlikely to stop a family member or friend who was planning to drive while under the influence of illegal drugs.
Data published by the Department for Transport (DfT) revealed 2,500 casualties were in relation to drug-driving in 2021, a whopping 260% increase since 2012. Meanwhile Ministry of Justice statistics2 show that convictions for driving a motor vehicle under the influence of drink or drugs overall has increased from 41,457 in 2014 to 58,117 in 2022 – a rise of 40% even at a time of declining full-time dedicated roads police officers.
IAM RoadSmart’s most recent annual Safety Culture Report3 showed that motorists of all ages consider drink and drug drivers as one of the biggest risks to their personal safety.