From 9 to 1
Another sign the mining community getting a handle on drug use
Wednesday 22 November 2017
Just one person has tested positive for drugs during a full weekend of random roadside testing in Moranbah.
According to Police, it's a significant improvement on just two years ago when a similar testing program found nine people under the influence of drugs while driving.
“The RPC units have been working with local detectives over the past two and a half years to curb drug crime,” Senior Constable John Clarke said.
“Pleasingly, although not a perfect report card, only one drug-driver tested positive.
“Moranbah has come a long way over the past couple of years.”
Encouragingly a similar road testing program was undertaken in February this year which yielded no results suggesting an improving trend.
Late last year the Australian Mines and Metals Association (AMMA) surveyed 53 resource companies about their management of drugs in the workplace.
Notable among the findings was that 65 percent of respondents had a zero tolerance for drugs and alcohol at work, while 25 percent took a “harm minimisation” approach.
According to the survey results, roughly 90 percent of testing at mine sites involves urine or breath sampling, while around 40 percent of respondents also used saliva samples.
AMMA’s director of workplace relations, Amanda Mansini said the increased prevalence of drug use in broader society was having an impact.
“Despite most resource employers recording low instances of positive or nonnegative tests, convincing employees to make sensible lifestyle choices outside the workplace remains a significant challenge in managing the potential impact of drugs and alcohol,” she said.
Among the biggest challenges identified by the survey for monitoring drugs around mines were the use of masking agents or ‘fake’ urine samples, the impact of prescription medicines, and the legality and practicality of taking saliva sample.
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