Driving is a skill that requires your full attention. When on the road, you need to stay focused and alert to make decisions and split-second reactions. Drugs affect your ability to react and increase the chances of a crash.
One study has found that 64% of cannabis consumers reported driving within 4 hours of consuming cannabis, and 20% say they drive within an hour after consuming. An alarming amount of people believe that driving high is safe. Experts do not know the exact impact marijuana has on the body, but they do know you should never drive while under the influence.
Marijuana is the illicit drug most frequently found in the blood of drivers who have been involved in vehicle crashes. However, the role played by marijuana in these crashes is often unknown because it can be detected days after the initial intoxication. Additionally, there is currently no legal marijuana blood limit, and it is much more difficult to test the level of intoxication of a high driver rather than a drunk driver. An accurate device such as the breathalyser does not yet exist for intoxication from drugs.
Driving under the influence of marijuana causes cognitive impairments that are correlated with reductions in driving performance. In fact, those involved in vehicle crashes with higher levels of THC are 7 times more likely to be responsible for the accident than sober drivers.
Drivers under the influence of marijuana experience:
- Altered Judgement;
- Reduced Alertness;
- Altered Depth Perception;
- Impaired Concentration;
- Shortened Attention Span;
- Affected Motor Skills;
- Affected Visual Function.
Drug impaired driving can put you, passengers, and any road users in danger. It is a serious criminal offense that can result in heavy fines and even jail time. If you plan on getting high, just like drinking, designate a sober driver or make other arrangements such as staying the night or calling a cab. Your last resort should never be to get behind the wheel high or get into the car with a high driver. Never underestimate the danger of impaired driving and make the smart, responsible choice of driving sober.
CLG Injury Law has over 35 years’ experience representing Atlantic Canadians who have suffered injuries following a motor vehicle accident. For more articles and safety tips, go to https://cantiniinjurylaw.ca/blog/ or subscribe to our newsletter.