New Zealanders’ drug driving habits are to go under the microscope in a new online survey.

The New Zealand Drug Foundation has launched the survey to find out about people’s attitudes and behaviours towards drug driving.

Drug Foundation director Ross Bell said a lot was known about drink driving but there had been very little research done on other substances.

“We lack a clear picture of how many New Zealanders have driven after using drugs, which drugs people tend to drive on, and what they think about the risks of drug driving.”

Bell said the research was important to help in the development of education and prevention initiatives.

“The issue of roadside drug testing is a case in point. Until we have an idea of the scale of the drug driving problem and some knowledge of what people think, we can’t be sure whether such measures are a worthwhile investment, or whether they would even work.”

Bell said international research showed that driving under the influence of drugs could be dangerous, but many people did not understand the risks involved.

A similar survey conducted in Australia last year found drug users were less likely to think drug driving was dangerous compared to those who did not use drugs.

Bell said he was hoping for at least 10,000 responses to the New Zealand survey and that it was anonymous to allow respondents to answer honestly about their own drug-taking habits.