Drugs can impair your ability to drive safely and increase the risk of getting into a collision.
Trained police officers can determine if you are under the influence of a drug and can charge you with impaired driving. You can have your license suspended, face fines, criminal charges, and even jail time.
When you drive a vehicle, you need to be alert and focused. Consuming even small amounts of cannabis affects your ability to react and increases your chance of being in a crash.
- Reduces the ability to make decisions quickly
- Reduces the ability to handle unexpected events
- Impairs short term memory and concentration
- Causes drivers to vary speed and to wander
GETTING BEHIND THE WHEEL WHILE IMPAIRED BY DRUGS IS NOT ONLY DANGEROUS, IT’S AGAINST THE LAW
Cannabis is not the only drug that affects your ability to drive. Other drugs, including cocaine or even prescribed drugs, such as opioids also pose a significant risk to your safety and the safety of your passengers, other drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. Over-the-counter medications may also impair your ability to drive.
DRUG-IMPARED DRIVING LAWS
Every state has laws dealing with alcohol-impaired driving and drug-impaired driving. But unlike the laws for drunk driving, those that address drugged driving are nuanced, difficult to enforce and prosecute and vary substantially by state.
Zero Tolerance laws make it illegal to drive with any measurable amount of specified drugs in the body. These laws are best suited for illegal drugs: if it is illegal to possess or use a drug, then it is reasonable to prohibit driving after the drug has been possessed and used.
16 states have zero tolerance laws in effect for one or more drugs.
Per Se laws make it illegal to drive with amounts of specified drugs in the body that exceed set limits.
6 states have per se laws in effect for one or more drugs.
Laws by state