Drug driving is a relatively new offence detected by a similar test to random breath testing. Police my charge you for drug driving if a saliva swab during this roadside testing detects the presence of an illicit drug in your system. The type of drug that can be dected by these tests are:

  • Cannabis
  • Ecstasy/MDMA
  • Methylamphetamines (ice)
  • Amphetamines (speed)

If any prohibited substances are dected by the roadside test, you will be subjected to further testing, Although you will not neccessarily be charged immediately, a 24 hour suspension of your licence will be enforced whislt your oral fluid sample is sent away for further analysis. Ultimately, if a prohibited drug is dected in your system after further tetsing, you will be charged with driving under the influence of an illicit drug.

Possible Charges

There are six primary offences in relation to drug offences, which include:

  • Having the presence of illicit substances in urine, blood or oral fluid
  • Altering the amount of drug before oral fluid test
  • Fail to provide urine/blood samples on demand, or alter result of drug in blood before test
  • Driving under the influence of drugs
  • Supervisor/driver involved in a fatal accident fail to supply urine/blood samples
  • Refusal to submit to a drug test



In New South Wales, the legislation which corresponds to drug driving is the,

  • Road Transport Act 2013  (NSW)



Driving under the influence of alcohol or prohibited substances 1st offence: $2,200

2nd offence: $3,300

1st offence: 9 months

2nd offence: 12 months

1st offence: 12 months (automatic)

2nd offence: 3 years (automatic)

Driving with the presence of any of the following substances present in oral, blood or urine samples:

– Cannabis

– Methylamphetamine (ice/speed)

– MDMA (ecstasy)

– Cocaine

– Morphine (unless proven for medicinal use)

1st offence: $1,100

2md offence: $2,200

NIL 1st offence: 6 months (automatic)

2nd offence: 12 months (automatic)

Refusal to provide oral fluid smaple OR submit blood sample when unable to provide oral fluid sample 1st offence: $3,300

2nd Offence: $5,500

1st offence: NIL

2nd offence: 18 months

1st offence: 3 years (automatic)

2nd offence: 5 years (automatic)


Wilfully altering amount of drug in oral fluid     or blood after being required to provide     sample 1st offence: $3,300

2nd offence:$5,500

 NIL 1st offence: 3 years (automatic)

2nd offence (automatic)

Refusal to submit, OR wilfully altering      amount of drug in, blood or urine sample     after involvement in a fatal crash. 1st offence: $3,300

2nd offence:$5,500

 1st offence: 18 months

2nd offence: 2 years

 1st offence: 3 years (automatic)

2nd offence: 5 years

Factors to be considered:

  • the type and amount of drugs detected in your system
  • whether or not there were any aggravating features to the offence
  • your traffic record
  • your need for a licence
  • whether you hace completed the Traffic Offender Intervention Program
  • your character

The complexity of these offences requires the extensive knowledge and meticulous attention to detail which our lawyers provide. Our team has specialised knowledge in drug driving offences having assisted many clients successfully defend charges or obtain lesser penalties once sentenced.

If you have been charged with a drug driving offence, our experts can help. Contact us to schedule an appointment with one of our lawyers in our office.

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