It has been 20 years since cannabis became legal for medicinal use in Colorado. In 2012, it became legal for all adults to use recreational marijuana in the state. Since then, medical and safety experts wondered if legalizing pot would cause a rise in injuries and accidents. According to new research, they may now have their answer. Learn more about pot legalization linked to rise of car accidents below.
Researchers from the University of California – San Francisco examined more than 28 million hospital records from various states. They concluded that car accidents in Colorado increased by 10 percent after marijuana was legalized. In addition, increases in alcohol abuse and overdoses increased by five percent. Overall, hospital admissions for cannabis abuse increased after 2012 when the drug was legalized in the state.
The study provides a unique opportunity to educate both policymakers and the public on the dangers of using marijuana while driving. Marijuana is a mind-altering substance and can significantly delay reaction times when driving. This can cause serious and fatal car accidents.
The Dangers of Drugged Driving
Drugs impair the body in many ways. Marijuana, in particular, hinders reaction times and decreases coordination. It also impairs the driver’s judgement of time and distance. In an emergency situation, stoned drivers are not always able to make the right decisions or recognize dangers quickly. When drivers lose control of their judgement and alertness, they endanger themselves and everyone around them.
Even a small amount of marijuana can impair a driver’s senses and judgement behind the wheel. If you suffer an injury in a car accident because of a drugged driver, it is important to know that the law is on your side. In Colorado, drivers with five nanograms of active THC in their blood can be prosecuted for driving under the influence. According to CDOT, more than 60 people a day are arrested for DUI in the state of Colorado.
Contact Our Pueblo DUI Accident Lawyers
If you or someone you love suffered an injury in a DUI accident in Pueblo or anywhere in Colorado, our law firm is the first call you should make. Pueblo attorneys at Smith & Smith are a compassionate and staunch legal advocate for injured accident victims and their families. He can help you through this difficult time and protect your rights to compensation every step of the way. Call us at (719) 544-0062 or fill out our confidential contact form for more information. We offer free initial consultations so we can review all of your legal options with you.