The Canadian government is close to approving a second cannabis test set for use by law enforcement officers who suspect that a driver may be impaired by marijuana. The kit uses a sample of saliva to test for the presence of THC in the body of an individual flagged down for possible marijuana impairment.
The Department of Justice had earlier issued an order on April 20 to add the three pieces of equipment made by Abbot to the equipment that the police can use to get preliminary results when they suspect that someone is driving while impaired after consuming marijuana.
The three pieces of “SoToxa” equipment are used together during roadside cannabis testing. The first component is used to collect a saliva sample, the second component holds that sample while the third tests the saliva collected for THC (the psychoactive component of marijuana).
According to the Department of Justice in Canada, a positive test result would give a strong indication that the driver had recently used marijuana.
The law enforcement officer can then take the next step in the process, which is to arrest the driver and take a blood sample so that comprehensive drugs testing can be done before the person is charged.
The company which makes the SoToxa equipment claims that their test kit is easier to use and produces results faster than any other roadside test kit currently available on the market.
The SoToxa and other similar products have been introduced on the Canadian market after the country passed a law on impaired driving at the same time as the passing of the law which legalized recreational cannabis in Canada.
Currently, the fate of the SoToxa test kit may be in the hands of the public since the government has opened a 30-day window within which members of the public can review the equipment and provide feedback about its usefulness.
The kit will be approved once the feedback from the public is considered no serious defects are unearthed.
However, the issue of testing drivers for impaired driving still seems to be shrouded in controversy. For example, a commission in Michigan recently recommended that no THC limit should be indicated as the threshold to determine that someone is impaired. Several reasons were given, such as there being no scientific data to establish what concentration of THC in the blood results in impairment.
One would therefore be prompted to wonder upon what basis the Canadian government came up with a THC limit for one to be guilty of driving under the influence of marijuana.
Global Payout Inc. (OTC: GOHE) and Geyser Brands Inc. (TSX.V: GYSR) hope that the roadside tests will catch truly impaired drivers rather than those whose bodies still contain cannabis metabolites long after the person used marijuana.
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