It appears that anti-drunk driving efforts may be working as drunk driving rates across the country are plummeting.
Unfortunately while alcohol-related traffic incidents are down it also appears that drug-related incidents are increasing. And the drug mostly related to these incidents is marijuana.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Head Mark Rosekind explains “The latest roadside survey raises significant questions about drug use and highway safety. The rising prevalence of marijuana and other drugs is a challenge to everyone who is dedicated to saving lives and reducing crashes.”
Indeed, marijuana use across the country may become more evident in society as laws continue to change. And this means that more people may have to be responsible for the effects that marijuana could have on a driver.
NHTSA associate administrator Jeff Michael comments, “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.”
The NHTSA associate administrator for research and development goes on to say, “Drivers should never get behind the wheel impaired, and we know that marijuana impairs judgment, reaction times and awareness.”
Rosekind continues, “The combined message of these two surveys is that our work to understand and combat drunk driving is paying off, but that we have much to learn about how illegal drugs and prescription medicines affect highway safety — and that developing that knowledge is urgent, because more and more drivers have these drugs in their systems.”
Obviously, this is a new issue that will take more time and more study to truly understand.