Navy drug probe finds positive test results

royal New Zealand navy
1799 personnel were screened between August and January (Supplied)

Compulsory drug testing introduced by the New Zealand Navy has caught out 10 staff members. 

Newly released documents show 1799 personnel were screened between August 2016 and 19 January this year, with 10 members of staff found with a positive result. That's around 0.6 percent of the overall number tested being caught out.

Last year, the Navy started testing its entire force for drug use following multiple incidents involving NZDF personnel.  When the policy was introduced, the Chief of Navy told staff the scale of the drugs issue was unclear, via a minute released to Newshub under the Official Information Act.

For those who did present a positive result in initial urine testing, their sample was forwarded to Environmental Science and Research for confirmation.

Those who were caught under the new regime will either face an administrative discharge from the Navy, or if they manage to keep their job they will likely receive a formal warning.

In the Official Information documents, Commodore Ross Smith says staff members who manage to keep their jobs will still suffer the consequences of their actions.

"If retained, the failure to pass the test will have a detrimental effect on an individual's career advancement in the short-term."

The figures come from the first round of personnel testing, with results from the second round likely to be available later in the year.