Nineteen lorry drivers and motorcyclists out of some 100 tested positive for drugs during a two-day operation by Kampong Cham provincial police.
Im Seangdy, the Kampong Cham provincial deputy police chief, said on Sunday that six people out of 67 tested positive for illicit substances on Saturday in the campaign by the anti-drug bureau and road traffic police officers.
“This campaign, in collaboration with traffic police and local drug authorities, was conducted not only to test drivers for drugs but also to enforce the traffic law,” he said.
He said from his observations, an average of 10 to 15 of 100 lorry drivers tested positive for drugs, which affected users, their families and society as a whole.
In one particular case, two motorcyclists tested positive for drugs after they crashed into a Choeung Prey district police checkpoint while fighting, the National Police website said on Saturday. One officer was injured.
“Authorities ordered the two motorcyclists to stop, but they refused and rode their motorbikes into the police barrier, causing injury to Major Seng Lyno, the deputy chief of the Choeung Prey district anti-drugs police office,” the website said.
Six other people failed drug tests at the checkpoint.
Three lorries and three motorbikes were temporarily impounded at the Kampong Cham provincial police headquarters in the operation.
Seangdy said that 103 lorry drivers and nine motorcyclists were tested on Friday at a checkpoint in Prey Chhor district’s Baray commune, 13 of whom tested positive.
General Meas Virith, the secretary-general of the National Authority of Combating Drugs (NACD), said testing lorry drivers were part of a nationwide anti-drugs campaign.
The authorities urged transport companies to work with them to educate drivers on the dangers of drugs and prevent their use, Virith said.
“Action will be taken in line with the law whenever we find drivers using drugs,” he added.
In the first six months of this year, 3,696 people underwent drug treatment in Phnom Penh and the provinces, while 3,182,039, including several monks, were educated against drug abuse, an NACD report said.