Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs To Be Targeted In First Roadside Tests For Coke

New South Wales drivers are looking like the first in Australia to start being roadside tested for traces of cocaine, with Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs directly in the firing line.

The Daily Telegraph reports that Police Minister Troy Grant has closed some loophole that prevented cocaine from being detected by the DrugWipe devices used by police.

“When roadside testing of oral fluids was introduced in 2006, suitable equipment for detecting cocaine was not available,” he told the paper. “Technology has advanced considerably since that time and the testing of oral fluid for cocaine is now feasible.”

Right now, roadside checks on drivers only test for cannabis, ecstasy and ice.

It’s controversial to say the least, with little clarity on how long different drugs are detectible in your system after the effects are no longer felt. For example, earlier this year a Lismore magistrate slammed the NSW Government‘s assertions that cannabis can only be detected in a person’s saliva for up to 12 hours, saying that he’d heard hundreds of cases in just a few months were drivers waited days, or even weeks, before driving.

NSW Greens MP David Shoebridge even launched a petition calling on police to abandon the roadside drug testing program in January this year, calling it “arbitrary, invasive, and [as having] no relationship to the impairment of drivers on our roads.”

The Daily Tele reports that a trial on roadside drug testing for coke could begin in the Eastern Suburbs by the end of the year.