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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: December 5, 2016 10:21 AM
From: Senator Scott E. Hutchinson
To: All Senate members
Subject: Drugged Driving Penalties
In the near future I intend to re-introduce legislation strengthening the penalties for driving under the influence of a controlled substance.

In recent years, the use and abuse of heroin, methadone and other controlled substances has risen dramatically and created issues both in our neighborhoods and on our roads. In 2015 Pennsylvania State Troopers arrested 4,431 individuals for drugged driving, a 43 percent increase from 2014. This trend has continued to rise, and if nothing is done there will be serious consequences.

Under my proposal, there would be a separate tier of penalties for drugged driving allowing penalties to be tailored specifically for that offense. The legislation also amends Title 75 to allow for roadside testing of saliva which would give officers the ability to test for drugged driving on the spot in the same way a breathalyzer works. The penalties for the third and fourth convictions would also be strengthened under this legislation.

Drugged driving is a very dangerous problem that is now too pressing to ignore. This legislation would create safer roads for the citizens of Pennsylvania by taking drugged drivers off the road. Please join me in cosponsoring this legislation.

This legislation was Senate Bill 1381 of last session. If you have any questions, please contact Nathan Akers in my office at 787-9684 or nakers@pasen.gov.

Introduced as SB38