There are some disagreements on whether driving while under the influence of marijuana is dangerous or not, but new research from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at least gets a little more precise in trying to answer the question.
The results of the study don’t show conclusively that drivers on weed are at especially increased risk of a car crash.
The NHTSA did a 20 month long survey of about 9,000 drivers on a report titled “Roadside Survey of Alcohol and Drug Use by Drivers”. In it, the study confirms an already obvious statistic that alcohol is by and large the highest cause of accidents. Marijuana has been found in an increasingly number of drivers who have been involved in car crashes over the years. They also say that the driver’s age is more of a factor for drivers who happen to have marijuana in their system at the time of a car crash.
The NHTSA spokesperson, Jeff Michael, does go on the record stating: “Drivers should never get behind the wheel impaired, and we know that marijuana impairs judgment, reaction times and awareness. These findings highlight the importance of research to better understand how marijuana use affects drivers so states and communities can craft the best safety policies.”
Meanwhile, the story of alcohol-related crashes continues on unabated in our booze-driven society marketed towards young men. It was discovered in the study that drivers who were above 0.08 percent blood-alcohol level where four times as likely to be in a car crash, while those above 0.15 percent carried as much as twelve times the likelihood.
This research was probably disappointing for anti-pot advocates, but they got plenty of other beefs to keep busy with.