New UK Drug laws will have a huge effect on drivers using both legal prescribed drugs and illegal drugs that could potentially see you being banned from driving, losing your job and having a criminal record for taking too many LEGALLY AVAILABLE over the counter medications as well as illegal substances.
In the UK the Drug driving law has under gone its biggest change since the Misuse of Controlled Drugs Act was introduced. The new laws take force today March 2nd 2015 give police powers to carry out roadside drug tests using a new to the UK test swab kit.
The police having powers to stop and check drivers for driving under the influence of illegal and legally prescribed drugs is actually nothing new. Police Officers currently have various powers and regulations at their disposal should they suspect a drivers ability to drive is impaired but actually proving the impairment in court and securing a conviction is quite difficult in many cases.
The radical change under the new reforms to the UK drug driving laws that will potentially have an effect on many drivers is that the new rules stipulate that no longer does the police have to prove that a driver’s ability to drive safely is impaired, a new system of measuring the levels of drugs in the blood will be used instead.
This new regulation is not just covering the illegal drugs that are widely available in society such as Cocaine or Cannabis but it is also hitting on many legal medications see the list below for the new allowable limits:
Table of drugs and limits
|‘Illegal’ drugs (‘accidental exposure’ – zero tolerance approach)||Threshold limit in blood|
|lysergic acid diethylamide||1µg/L|
|‘Medicinal’ drugs (risk based approach)||Threshold limit in blood|
|amphetamine (regulations were recently laid with the proposed limit and expected to come into force after 2 March 2015)||250µg/L|
See more on the Governments changes to this law and how it effects you just click here.
Confused?… Wondering why a legal cough syrup or pain killer can see you in the brown sticky stuff? So are we….
From the research we have done it seems that the new UK laws will work along the lines of this. If you are stopped driving your car a police officer can, without probable cause or suspicion demand that you do a roadside swab test to identify what if any drugs maybe in your system. This swab is analysed at the roadside and if the indication is positive for either legal or illegal drugs then you will be taken to a police station where a blood test will be done, refusal to take this blood test will result in you being charged with the new offence of driving with blood level limits higher than allowed in the above table, potentially resulting in a 12 month disqualification, £5000 fine and a criminal record that could see you sacked from your job and make obtaining insurance either pricey or impossible, you could also be stopped from holidaying in certain countries such as USA and Canada and you can even go to prison.
If you look at the table above you may notice, if you can make sense of it, that the limits accepted for illegal drugs such as Cannabis or Cocaine are set much lower than the legal drugs, the thought pattern behind this is there is no legitimate excuse for having these substances in your blood system any way but for some it poses more questions than actual answers.
You could argue that people should not take these illegal drugs at all and you have a point, but what does that have to do with driving if the law no longer needs to prove impairment. Certain drugs stay in the body for longer than others, for instance people who smoke cannabis will have the traces of the drug in their blood for up to 28 days after the event of smoking, no one who smokes cannabis will still be high or impaired days after smoking a cannabis joint but it’s quite possible that they would still be over the new accepted blood limits. This part of the law seems unfair and also needs challenging.
It’s not just illegal drugs either, certain medications such as strong pain killers and cold and flu treatments can also be detected in this road side swab but the crazy thing on this side is that the law allows you a defence that as long as you are taking them as prescribed or instructed on the packet then you will not be prosecuted regardless of the levels in your blood and whether or not you are impaired!
It will be interesting to see how this pans out, no doubt many people will fall foul of this new law and will be wrongly prosecuted and have their lives ruined by it, they may well be over this superficial limit but it does not mean they are not fit to drive. On the flip side, many drivers will deserve it as driving whilst high or stoned is and should be illegal but it’s the point that the police don’t need to prove impairment that suggests it’s a huge grey area waiting to be challenged in the UK courts, and the European High Courts because this zero tolerance approach that removes the need of factual evidence of impairment is not only an infringement of rights but it’s about saving time and money in the courts and possibly creating money from the fines imposed.
One big problem here is educating the public and giving them the tools to self-test or guidelines that are easily understood. Many drivers will have one or two alcoholic drinks but not more as they are aware of the limits in law, this gives the public a chance to make the right choice and stay within the law by deciding not to have too many. With drug driving it should be much the same thing, the advice should always be don’t have any at all (alcohol or drugs) but without the means to test yourself correctly it will turn many usually law abiding people into criminals simply because they are not aware of the true limits and are unable to self-limit or test, the majority of these people would probably never dream of driving over the prescribed limit of alcohol or drugs.
Many feel this is a step too far, how can it be ok to have one or two units of alcohol but have a zero tolerance approach to drugs, I for one have been out in the pub after not eating much all day and felt pretty dizzy or a little drunk on 2 pints of lager, I would never drive that way but I guess if I did I would be impaired in some way as my head is not clear even though I would be totally legal and under the limit allowed for alcohol. Once again the law has over looked too many facts to make this a fair and proper piece of legislation.
For more information on this see: Drug-drive changes and “drugalysers” come into force article by the BBC.
The introduction of 3D printing has changed the face of technology in the world. This technology is being used in several fields and the medical field has caught the bug. Researchers are looking in to the prospects of biological 3D printing in creation of human parts. How credible is this system? How does it work?
The biologic printer prints material that resembles living tissue. The 3D printer uses water as its creating material. Small water droplets are squeezed out of the machines and laid on to a layer of oil. The printer works in the same way as other 3D printers by laying the material in layers in order to create items. The end result is a gel-like material that can bend and be manipulated in different scenarios. The droplets of water are held by a lipid bi-layer that holds the material together and keeps it from falling apart. The water and the oil are made in such a way that they co-exist well enough to allow the cells to move about freely.
The final material was tested in a couple of forums to determine how akin it is to living tissue. The researchers added protein to the water droplets and it cut holes in the lipid bi-layer. This action resembles that of a pulse impulse that passes through tissue. They also created self-folding material. They tested this using salt on the enclosed droplets of the lipid layer. In this test, the water moved from the non-salted area to the salted area. The material’s petals folded up to create a hollow ball. This works in the same way as muscle tissue in the body.
The main purpose of 3D printing in all forums is to create items that can mutate in certain situations. In the medical field, 3D printing is aimed at creating living tissue that will be applied in several forums. The researchers are still working on making the system effective. The tests carried out on the materials were done on a simple scale that does not match the intricacies of the human body perfectly. However, the simple tests are a step in the right direction.
image credit http://cartridgeexpress.net
If, and when, biological printing becomes effective enough, it can be used in several medical situations. For example, the living tissue can be used in organ transplant. In this case, instead of an outside donor providing the part, one’s body will be used to create the organ. The living tissue created will be put in to the body and programmed to track the problematic area. It will then be able to recreate the organ and bring it back to life. The technology can also be used to create body parts such as ears and cornea. It will revolutionize regenerative medicine and create new medical solutions.
Researchers have revealed that the printing process in the medical field is more delicate than any other field. This is because the material created should perform in the same way as living cells. Living cells are tricky to create since they carry out several processes such as movement, rebuilding and recreation. Creation is easy, controlling is the tricky part. However, with the large investment being put in to this project, the future of biological 3D printing definitely looks promising.
As we know the UK is one of the richest countries in Europe so its no wonder that immigrants from all over Europe and other countries want to come here for work. You cant escape the fact that many people come for dole money and NHS treatment, but also a lot are coming to commit crime, you see the UK is rich pickings for criminal gangs.
The UK is quite possibly the crime capital of Europe and millions of pounds in stolen money is confiscated every year by the UK government using the POCA scheme (Police and Criminal Evidence Act). So what do you think happens to all this money that has been confiscated from the crooks?, well of course it is stolen so you might expect it to be destroyed which it should be because it is stolen or obtained immorally.
Wrong! what actually happens is that all the stolen or ill gotten money confiscated from crooks gets re-distributed between the government and the police. (who would of thought that the UK government would distribute stolen cash between themselves and the police). Am I missing something here?, If you or I spend stolen cash we would undoubtedly get arrested and dragged before the courts for this and quite possibly sent to prison and fined and what ever else they chuck at us.
This is double standards!, How can they expect us to stick to the rules and trust them when they pull dirty tricks like this?. I think it is a clear case of “do as I say not do as I do”, Fortunately lots of people are starting to think along similar lines about governments now especially with the release of wiki leaks and so on, the general public is finally waking up to what is going on around them.
Another thing you might wish to consider; say for instance one morning you wake up and realise you have to go to the bank because you have run out of cash, Well make sure that you keep the receipt and do not lose it, because if the police stop you for a routine check and find just a few hundred pounds on you they now have the power to confiscate it under the POCA rule (the proceeds of crime act) which means that the responsibility is no longer on the police to prove you have obtained the cash dishonestly…no!…. it doesn’t work like that anymore, now under the POCA rules YOU must prove that where you have got the money from. Please don’t think that this only applies to dodgy geezers because it doesn’t, everyday Joe like you and me have already fell foul of this law and are having to appeal to try and recover money which the Police have basically stolen it from them.
All money from the POCA goes to the government or the police which obviously means that the Police will do everything they can to get their hands on your cash especially in the current financial climate that has seen national police budgets slashed by millions.
Finally…If you are wondering how innocent UK citizens came to be in this almost oppressed situation…Blame X Prime Minister Tony Blair as it was his government that passed this bill, it was sold to the the MP’s and public as a way to counter terrorism by confiscating their cash but it has now been turned on the very people it was meant to protect… Thanks for that Tony!
The South Korean Oriental firm on Tuesday approximated an operating revenue of 8.3 trillion won (US$ 7.8 billion) for the final 3 months of 2013, a 6% decline over a year previously.
The outcome was less than forecast by analysts and an 18% decrease from the 3rd quarter. Sales increased 5% to 59 trillion won (US$ 55.4 billion).
Considering that the last quarter of 2011, Samsung’s operating earnings has actually raised every quarter, peaking at 10.2 trillion succeeded in the July-September period. The fourth-quarter efficiency reveals that eruptive growth in Samsung’s financially rewarding mobile device office has actually come to a halt.
It will certainly release its net revenue result for the 4th quarter later this month.
Experts said Samsung’s profit dropped considering that its companies providing sophisticated shows and chips for iPhones and Galaxy smartphones published smaller sized revenue. They claimed Samsung’s mobile phone office making Galaxy smartphones and Galaxy Equipment clever watches was not as financially rewarding as before due to greater advertising and marketing costs.
“It’s a revenues shock,” claimed expert Brian Track at KDB Daewoo Stocks Co. “The revenue at mobile communications office must have been considerably lower than anticipated although it’s likely that Samsung gave larger perks to staff members.” Track had determined 9.3 trillion won of operating profit for Samsung.
Samsung Electronic devices’ will without a doubt experiences more competition in China. Beginning following week, Apple Inc as planned to start selling apples iphone with China Mobile Ltd, the world’s biggest cordless provider, a move that can threaten Samsung’s development in the mobile phone market.
Samsung held 21% share in China’s smartphone market throughout the third quarter, up from 14 per cent a year previously, while Apple’s share declined to 6 per cent from 8%, according to research company Canalys.
Britain’s chancellor George Osborne today announced that after 93 long years of use they would be scrapping the tax disc that all UK citizens must display in the windscreen of their vehicles.
The disc was introduced in 1921 as a way of indicating to authorities that car tax as it was then known had been paid.
You would be forgiven for thinking that the government was actually doing the cash cow UK motorist a favour but it is by no way a time for motorists to rejoice as the Vehicle Excise Duty, as its now known still has to be paid it’s just that due to the advances in technology there is no reason to have to display a disc in the window. The excise details are logged onto the government’s main computer system which cross checks owner and registration details to ensure the duty is paid and up to date, added to this most cities and the majority of Police cars are now fitted with ANPR systems.
Other news is that the treasury is also introducing a direct debit system so drivers can spread the costs and pay monthly rather than buying the disc in six month or twelve month increments. Under the current system motorists can save 10% by paying for a whole 12 months in one go but this is expected to be reduced to 5% savings under the new system. Motorists wishing to pay monthly by direct debit will at charged 10% above the cost of the single twelve month payment.
The general public will not see this as a benefit to them more of a cash saving measure by the treasury department.
People in the Cardigan Road area of Leeds today woke to a high police presence after the shooting of a 33 year old Neighbour-hood Police Officer.
The unarmed officer was shot after attending an address in the early hours of the morning near Headingly, just outside Leeds city centre to arrest a suspect for what should have been a low level incident of criminal damage. During routine enquiries a firearm was produced and discharged shooting one of the attending officers.
The female officer managed to raise the alarm by pressing her panic button and her male colleague also on the scene with her immediately administered first aid and moved her to a safer location.
Neighbours reported hearing shots at around 3.30 am when suspect James Lesley, a 37 year old local man made off after the shooting. Police immediately launched a major man hunt literally sealing off one half of the city. The search continued for several hours resulting in a male suspect, believed to be James Lesly arrested at around 10am on Wood Lane not far from the incident. Police discovered what was described as a cut down shot gun next to a primary school during the arrest.
The female officer is suffered injuries to her arm, face and hand, she is currently in hospital where her condition is reported as poorly, stable but not life threatening.
Police have confirmed that James Lesley is now in Police custody and assisting detectives with their enquires. The police have also confirmed that they are not looking for any other suspects in connection with the shooting but are asking local people who may have witnessed anything to come forward.