Earlier this year we had reported the addition of a portable device that
can detect marijuana and numerous other drugs. The Los Angeles Police
Department will begin using a similar device at New Year's Checkpoints
this year. The device works by having a swab taken of the inside of the
mouth. The swab is then tested for cocaine, Xanax, methamphetamine, amphetamines,
narcotic analgesics, methadone and THC. The test takes about eight minutes
to complete and if drugs are found, the consequences are similar to driving
under the influence of alcohol.
The key is to be careful. Always designate a sober driver or take advantage
of things like AAA's Tipsy Tow. Most counties have geared up enforcement
as part of the "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign." It
simply is not worth it to drink and drive or drive under the influence
of drugs. Our best advice is to arrange a sober driver ahead of time.
Taxis are notoriously difficult to get on New Year's Eve that may
lead to some people who otherwise would not have driven taking the chance.
Do not be tempted. If you are pulled over remember that if you are over
21 year's old you are only required to complete a chemical breath
or blood test after arrest. The first thing you must do after an arrest
for driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs is call a qualified
DUI Defense Attorney. We are here to help.