SKIPTON and district drivers can expect to be drug tested over the coming months with the local police station included in a testing trial across western Victoria.
The trial expands the drug testing program to one-person stations and will also include Harrow, Lake Bolac, Wycheproof, Manangatang, Edenhope and Stanhope.
Until now, roadside drug testing was only led by specialist units, including state and local highway patrol units, the Heavy Vehicle Unit, and the Road Policing Drug and Alcohol Section (RPDAS).
Western region Superintendent Peter Greaney said there was opportunity to reallocate a number of drug tests to the one-person stations.
“We were extremely keen to be part of this trial,” Supt Greaney said.
“Regional areas across Victoria unfortunately tend to be over-represented when it comes to serious injury and fatal collisions, and the sad reality is that drugs and alcohol are often underlying factors.
“If this expansion means more police officers can help take even one drug driver off our roads, that’s already a huge win for our region.”
The trial is expected to run until March 30, 2020, however it may be expanded further and to other areas depending on the results.
Supt Greaney said the initiative would hopefully influence motorist attitudes and deter people from making poor decisions behind the wheel.
“Drivers can expect to be pulled over for a roadside drug test at any place and any time, so be warned – if you take drugs and drive, you will be caught,” he said.