Driver under the influence of HHC? The police do not have a targeted test

Driver under the influence of HHC? The police do not have a targeted test
Driver under the influence of HHC? The police do not have a targeted test

“We do not have a special test for HHC,” David Schön, spokesman for the police presidium, told Novinkám.

To detect drugs in a driver, they use Drugwipe tests, which can recognize several substances at once. For example, they can capture opiates, cocaine, amphetamine, methamphetamine or marijuana. When the result is positive, a medical examination and blood analysis follow.

“In the event that the test is negative and the driver appears to be under the influence, the police officer can ask him to submit to a professional medical examination, which will find out what the driver is under the influence of,” added Schön.

It is currently more complicated for cannabis derivatives, as new types are constantly appearing on the market. The government, with the approval of the European Commission, included the cannabinoids HHC, HHC-O and THCP on the list of prohibited addictive substances. As of March 6, their sale, possession and use are illegal.

But shortly after that, sellers started offering other variants, such as HHC-P, THCP-O or THC-JD. Development is very fast. Current saliva drug tests used by security forces may not reliably catch them.

For both the driver and the prisoner

Specially adapted tests, which are being developed by a team led by Associate Professor Martin Kuchar from the University of Chemistry and Technology in Prague, could help.

Visually, they should resemble the antigen tests widely used in the covid pandemic, when a saliva sample is dripped into a designated place and a few minutes are waited to see if the tested person’s positivity is confirmed by two strips.

“The project is still in its early stages. The principle is similar to that of current drug tests, i.e. from saliva. It is possible that it will later spread to urine as well,” Docent Kuchař outlined.

There are dozens of cannabinoids. Scientists must therefore balance the test so that it detects only psychoactive cannabis substances. The use should be wider, not just for the currently banned variants of HHC and THCP.

“The tests will be focused on a group of all similar derivatives of the homologous series from THCB to THC-JD plus their “H” variants and probably “O” variants. With kratom, the active ingredient mitragynine alkaloid will be targeted,” Kuchař told Novinkám.

The project will last three years, but the first samples could be tested in a year and a half. It could help not only the traffic police, who would detect intoxication in drivers right on the spot.

“It could also be used for toxicology in a hospital or prison, where it is estimated that about 500 drug tests will be done. The presence of the substance is an aggravating circumstance for the convict,” added Kučera. It is not only the possession but also the use of illegal substances that is problematic for prisoners.

According to him, the private sector has also shown interest in unique tests. The potential could be for employers to also test employees if they suspect they are under the influence of drugs.

Drugs will wait two years to enter stores. Advertising on them will disappear, the deputies agreed


The article is in Czech


Tags: Driver influence HHC police targeted test


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