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Test for Marijuana Intoxication Becomes Important as the Drug is Legalized in States Across the Country

March 11, 2020

USA- writes that drunk drivers are not the only impaired drivers causing risks on the road. Drivers under the influence of marijuana are also creating dangers throughout the United States. Many understand that the legalization of marijuana will lead to more people driving after using this drug. States that have approved the legal use of marijuana for recreational purposes are witnessing an increase in car accidents.*

One problem is that it is difficult to test drivers to determine if they are under the influence of marijuana. When it comes to alcohol consumption, the tests to determine blood alcohol levels are well refined and trustworthy. Officers have ways to determine rather quickly whether a motorist has been drinking alcohol. The same tests are not being used to determine if a driver is under the influence of marijuana, and this makes enforcing sober driving more challenging. 

A saliva test has been designed to test for recreational drugs, but police in many places are not able to use the test on drivers they pull over. 

Drugged driving is already a significant problem in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about twelve million people drive under the influence of marijuana every year. Tests have determined than more than four out of ten drivers killed in crashes tested positive for the drug, and many of those individuals tested positive for other drugs as well. 

Drivers under the influence of marijuana are about two times as likely to cause a crash as a sober driver would be. Experts say that in order to deter this dangerous behavior, it is necessary to give officers the opportunity to test drivers with a reliable method. 

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Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.