Fact: Drunk driving is stupid.
Fact: Drunk driving is irresponsible.
Fact: Drunk driving is dangerous.
However, what if we told you that “drugged driving” is equally as stupid, irresponsible and dangerous?
Would you believe us?
It’s true. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Governor’s Highway Safety Association performed a study that proves that driving under the influence of marijuana and other drugs is just as dangerous as alcohol.
The report stated that 38% of the people who died in an automobile accident in 2013, and who were tested, had detectable levels of potentially impairing drugs—both illegal and legal in their system. This percentage is nearly the same as those who test positive for alcohol.
Marijuana is the most commonly used drug at 34.7% and amphetamines come in second at 9.7%. Other improperly used drugs, such as stimulants (like those used to treat ADHD) or decongestants (Nyquil, Sudafed, etc.), were also detected and identified as possible causes. The different types of drugs seem to be endless. Whether they are pain killers, like oxycodone or hydrocodone, or sleep aids such as Ambien, people are using and abusing these drugs and then driving irresponsibly and endangering other motorists. The report continues to state that those individuals who are operating a vehicle under any drug are two times more likely to crash.
The law in Georgia is:
In Georgia, a person is guilty of a DUI if he or she is: (1) driving while under the influence of any drug to the extent that it is less safe for the person to drive; OR (2) if a person operates a motor vehicle with any amount of marijuana or a controlled substance present in the person’s body. O.C.G.A. § 40-6-391(a)
(1) Driving Under the Influence
A person is guilty of a DUI if that person drives any moving vehicle while under the influence of any drug to the extent that it is less safe for the person to drive. O.C.G.A. § 40-6-391(a)(2)
The use of marijuana and other drugs is a growing problem. While Georgia has yet to legalize the use of marijuana, accidents are still happening because people are using it, and other drugs, illegally and operating a vehicle.
For more information, contact Kaine Law.