Bereaved brother exposes the terrible consequences of drug-driving

A teenager whose brother was killed by a drug-driver has urged people to stop anyone they see under the influence of drugs from driving because it can save lives.

Speaking to the BBC, Callum Smith said he was “crushed” after the loss of his brother Aiden, who died two years ago after being struck by a car driven by a drug-driver.

His testimony comes as new figures, obtained by the BBC, show there are “major inconsistencies” in the number of drug-driving arrests in England and Wales.

‘Taken away’

The 19-year-old said his family was left “devastated by what happened” and his mother is still struggling to come to terms with the loss.

“I can’t describe what she’s going through. She’s the most amazing mum in the world and she gave everything up for us.

“All that she wanted in return was to see that we were happy growing up. And that’s been taken away from her by someone who was on drugs who shouldn’t have been doing what they were doing.”

Drug-driving limits were introduced in England and Wales in 2015 with penalties for a conviction including an unlimited fine and up to six months in prison. However, the driver who killed Aiden was given a suspended prison sentence.

Mixed response

BBC Radio 1’s Newsbeat requested information from 43 police forces and 39 forces responded with usable data.

There were large variations in the proportion of drug-driving arrests across the forces.

Zoe Billingham, of Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary, said: “Some forces appear to be proactive in enforcing the drug driving laws, while others are not.”

Billingham called on chief constables to “look closely at this data and decide whether this important issue of road safety is being prioritised appropriately in their force”.

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