During discussions about driving under the influence and the dangers it causes, people frequently think about alcohol. However, drugged driving is also a problem in Connecticut and across the nation. This has been a rising concern especially since cannabis has been legalized in the state. When a person gets behind the wheel after using drugs, it diminishes their ability to operate a vehicle safely and can cause an accident. Research is ongoing as to how cannabis negatively impacts safe driving. That, combined with other drugs, places innocent people in jeopardy of injuries and death in a collision. This should be considered when there has been a crash and those who were hurt or lost a loved one are thinking about their options.
Researchers assess cannabis-related impairment
A study that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Psychiatry found that people who used cannabis before getting behind the wheel had diminished performance for an extended period. Conducted by the University of California San Diego, driving ability was far worse for those who had used cannabis. There were nearly 200 participants in the two-year study. Some were given placebos; others received cannabis with the psychoactive compound either at 5.9% or 13.4%. Composite Drive Scores (CDS) were analyzed based on how long they drove and the duration for which the drug had an effect. The largest difference between those who did not consume cannabis and those who did were found from a half-hour to 1.5 hours after inhalation. As time passed, the differences slowly waned until they were no longer an issue at 4.5 hours.
Accident in Connecticut that injured two children led to DUI arrest
Drug use can hinder people’s driving ability causing crashes with long-term consequences. One case that is set to head to court exemplifies what can happen. A 28-year-old man was found to have alcohol, marijuana and PCP in his system after he had a head-on collision with another vehicle. There were three adults and four children in the other vehicle. Two of the children – ages 3 and 6 – were seriously injured. The younger child had a skull fracture other injuries. The 6-year-old needed surgery for mouth injuries. The alleged DUI driver had crossed the center line of the road. A baggie containing what officers believed was marijuana was found. At the hospital, he was tested and the substances were discovered in his system.
Those injured in any DUI auto accident should understand their rights
Just as alcohol is legal and people should not drive and drive, the same is true for cannabis. When there is a motor vehicle accident, it is important to determine its cause and gather evidence. That may include blood tests and what the law enforcement officer observed in the aftermath of the collision. Since researchers are finding new and troubling facts about cannabis, it is wise to keep current on this information, particularly for those facing medical expenses, lost income, long-term problems and more after an accident. Having compassionate and aggressive assistance can make sure those who drove under the influence of drugs or alcohol are taken to task for their behavior and people who were harmed receive justice.