With the push for marijuana legalization in parts of the country, many new ways of ingesting the drug are coming onto the market. Users can now purchase vaporizer pens (very similar to e-cigarettes) that make smoking the drug easier to do in public situations. In addition to the pens, users always have the option of ingesting marijuana through food. Making marijuana accessible in these forms poses a new problem for law enforcement – the potential for more people to be operating vehicles while under the influence is likely to increase. In fact, now that marijuana is starting to become legal in some states, new laws and more precautions will need to be taken in order to minimize the amount of people driving under the influence of marijuana. Perhaps even more dangerous are those who ingest marijuana and consume alcohol at the same time.
A 2013 study showed that people were two times more likely to crash if they were under the influence of drugs. If a person is under the influence of alcohol they are fourteen times more likely to be involved in a car accident. If a person is under the influence of drugs and alcohol they are 23 times more likely to be involved in a vehicular crash.
A Colorado man knows first-hand how mixing substances impairs a driver, according to reports. Eleven days after the state made marijuana legal; he crashed his vehicle into a row of police cars. He was under the influence of marijuana and alcohol at the time of the crash. Being under the influence of alcohol and getting behind the wheel is commonly known as deadly – drunk driving accounts for one-third of traffic-related deaths. Mixing drugs like marijuana and alcohol has the potential to surpass drunk driving in overall consequences though.
Now that marijuana is becoming more common place it is necessary to look into preventing more and more impaired drivers from hitting the roads. If users can now consume marijuana using a form of an e-cigarette what will stop them from using it in a bar while they are having some drinks?
This information shows that people don’t have to be “wasted” to be extremely dangerous on the roads. The combination of even small amounts of alcohol and marijuana combined create a very lethal situation behind the wheel.