Drugs and driving – FFDLR comment following media speculation on methadone causing tragic accident.
No one should drive while their capacity to do so is impaired, not least dependent drug users while affected by a legal pharmaceutical like methadone.
So yes, action needs to be taken to head off a repeat of the recent sickening triple fatality at Sussex Inlet on the South Coast reported to involve a driver returning to Ulladulla from a methadone clinic in Nowra.
The obvious and most effective measure is to establish methadone prescription services wherever they are needed rather than bar someone in need of health services from accessing those services by cancelling his/her licence. Health treatment not practically accessible because of time, distance or lack of public transport is treatment denied.
So those impaired because of methadone shouldn’t drive but neither should the many more on prescription painkillers such as oxycodone, morphine and codeine.
If politicians are genuinely concerned about improving road safety rather than scoring cheap political points at the expense of the most marginalised they should make methadone more rather than less accessible and seriously tackle the much, much bigger problem of other misused pharmaceuticals.