Toronto seeing significant spike in drivers impaired by drugs

Drunk driving is still a major issue for police in Toronto with close to 1,400 busted last year.

Now there's a significant uptick being seen in the number of drivers being arrested and charged for hopping behind the wheel high on drugs.

Eighty-seven were taken off the roads in 2016, compared to 29 the year before.

There are a couple of reasons why the number of drivers impaired by drugs is on the rise.

One is heightened enforcement as police prepare for the legalization of marijuana.

"The truth is it's illegal now, it'll be illegal in the future to be impaired by drug while operating a motor vehicle even if marijuana is made legal," says Sgt. Brett Moore with Traffic Services.

The other reason is that drug use is becoming more prevalent and not just pot.

"There's prescription drugs; there's ramifications if you take them incorrectly and drive a motor vehicle. There's opiates, there's a whole gamut of controlled substances that can make you impaired," he adds.

Toronto has roughly 15 drug recognition officers; there are 150 officers trained to give a field sobriety test.