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Study shows drivers nonchalant about marijuana use

| Jun 21, 2019 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

A recent study published by the American Automobile Association, or AAA, shows that many drivers in Georgia may not fully appreciate the risks of driving while high on marijuana.

For instance, almost 15 million motorists admitted to, at least once the previous month, driving within 1 hour of ingesting marijuana. The problem of driving while high appears to be more prevalent among the younger generations of drivers, with 14% of Millennial drivers admitting to driving shortly after doing marijuana. Likewise, 10% of those in the so-called iGen, or Generation Z, admitted to doing so.

Typically, the drug affects the human body for about 1 to about 4 hours after a person ingests it. As is the case with any other drug, marijuana can affect a person’s ability to drive safely on many levels. Someone who is high could have up to double the likelihood of being involved in a motor vehicle accident.

Nevertheless, there is a common perception that those who drive while under the influence of marijuana are unlikely to get caught, either due to an accident or otherwise. In fact, 70% of those who responded to the recent survey said that someone who uses marijuana and then drives within the hour is unlikely to face a criminal charge at the hands of law enforcement.

Moreover, 13% of those surveyed said that they thought driving while high was only slightly dangerous or even not dangerous. While it is relief to know that the vast majority of those surveyed feel otherwise, just over 1% of those surveyed thought drunk driving was only slightly dangerous.

Hopefully, improved law enforcement and more public awareness will convince drivers that, even as society as a whole grows to accept marijuana use, driving while under the influence of it is still risky business. Victims of a drugged driver in Northern Georgia may be able to pursue compensation for their losses.