News story: Exploring innovations for point of contact drug drive testing

The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) is pleased to launch a new Market Exploration called Evidential Testing of Drug Drivers, which aims to explore innovative technology to support more efficient handling of drug drive cases, through point of contact testing.

This Market Exploration is being run on behalf of the Home Office (HO) and seeks technologies from across the Technology Readiness Level (TRL) spectrum.

Do you have an innovative solution? Read the full Market Exploration now and submit your idea.

Enabling accurate roadside testing for drug drive cases

Drug driving is most commonly policed by Section 5A of the Road Traffic Act 1988, which states it is an offence to be in charge of a motor vehicle with a concentration of a specified drug above a specified limit. Read the full Market Exploration for information on concentration thresholds in blood for drug driving offences.

To get evidence for court proceedings, a blood sample is sent to a Forensic Service Provider (FSP) for analysis. This Market Exploration aims to reduce the logistical burden on FSP toxicology departments, by seeking technology or concepts that may lead to an instrument police can use to perform evidential analysis at a police station or at the roadside.

Current legislation requires evidential analysis of a sample of blood or urine. DASA is also interested less invasive alternatives, such as saliva testing.

What innovations are DASA and the Home Office looking for?

We are looking for a technology that can provide a comparable result to laboratory testing. Solutions may include innovations that:

  • can contribute to a device or approach at least equivalent or better than current laboratory testing
  • is applicable to one or both of cocaine or cannabis (THC). However, it is desirable for the innovation to have the potential to be acted upon all the drugs listed in the full Market Exploration document
  • is capable of generating a ‘while you wait’ result (ideally no more than 30 minutes)
  • helps us understand which testing matrices the technology uses is most effective, such as blood, urine or saliva

Do you have an in-depth understanding of emerging capabilities, technologies, initiatives and novel approaches that may help enable accurate roadside testing for drug drive cases? Submit an idea and help inform the Home Office in methods for improving point of contact testing for drug drivers

Submit your innovation

Read the full Market Exploration document and submit your innovation.

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