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Law Enforcement Groups Test New Tool For Identifying Stoned Drivers


As California prepares for the roll out of recreational marijuana, some law enforcement groups and lawmakers say they have found an effective new tool for identifying stoned drivers.

California Highway Patrol and Sacramento Police officers used a new mouth swab during a DUI demonstration at the Capitol today Wednesday.

Some criminal justice reform groups are concerned it will unfairly target drivers who have used marijuana, but are not impaired.

But Republican Assemblyman Tom Lackey says the swab detects a specific marijuana compound that will only identify people who have used it within the past few hours.

“The goal of this whole demonstration was to show you that we’re not out to identify just usage, our goal is to remove only people who are impaired,” says Lackey.

Lackey recently passed a bill that creates a task force to review and identify the best technology for spotting drugged driving.

A national study found for the first time in 2015, of the motorists who died in accidents, more tested positive for drug use than tested positive for alcohol.


Sally Schilling

Reporter/Podcast Producer

Sally Schilling is a Davis native and a graduate of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. She has reported on redwood poachers robbing national forests in Humboldt County and the dangers of melting tropical glaciers in the Peruvian Andes.  Read Full Bio 

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