Around 1.2 million drivers admit they have been behind the wheel under the influence of drugs in the past 12 months.
Drug driving has the same penalties as drink driving – so the irresponsible motorists face fines and bans if they are caught.
The findings of research for an online car insurance provider revealed a third drivers believed they were safe behind the wheel under the influence of illegal drugs.
Crashed on cannabis
Just over a third of all drug drivers are stoned on cannabis – including the potent skunk variety.
One in 20 (6%) admit they were involved in a crash while high on drugs.
Independent research shows that drugs alter perception of distance and speed, and many (20%) continue to drive even when they consider they are a danger on the road.
Excuses for driving under the influence of drugs include not expecting to get caught (8%), not thinking straight (7%), no money for a taxi (6%) and a lack of public transport (4%).
One in 20 drug drivers admitted speeding and a similar number confessed to colliding with other vehicles or walls.
Car insurance pulled
Although cannabis was by far the most popular illegal substance of choice for drug drivers, they also admitted to driving while under the influence of a wide range of chemicals, including ecstasy in tablet and MDMA power form (22%); cocaine (15%); illegally obtained antidepressants (9%); ketamine (7%); magic mushrooms (7%); amphetamines (7%) and MCat (4%).
Legal highs were also taken by 7% of drug drivers.
One of the UK’s largest car insurers, Aviva, has already announced that any claim related to driving under the influence of illegal drugs will void the motorist’s policy.
Other car insurance providers are expected to follow Aviva’s lead soon, especially as the department of Transport has unveiled a crackdown on drug driving.