Omaha marijuana possession lawyer Daniel Stockmann usually gets calls from motorists who have been pulled over on one of Nebraska’s interstates and charged with trafficking, but AAA just released a study that suggests this pales in comparison to some of the other effects that occur when weed and vehicles mix. The agency has been monitoring Washington state since recreational marijuana has been legalized and the statistics they’ve gathered are of grave concern.
Fatal Crashes Involving Weed Have Doubled
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that fatal crashes are increasing overall, up to 35,200 from 32,675, an 8% jump. It’s the largest spike in fatalities the agency has seen in more than 50 years. It’s seen across the board, even in states that have not legalized weed, but those that did make legislative changes saw even more drastic increases. Comparing statistics from now and prior to Washington’s shift in legislation, the number of fatal crashes involving drivers with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in their systems has doubled. THC is the main component of weed that is responsible for the high people feel when they ingest or smoke it. Prior to the legal changes, around 8% of drivers in fatal crashes tested positive for THC, but it jumped to 17% in the latest reporting year.
Law Enforcement Largely Unprepared to Test Drivers
AAA also reports that around 13% of nighttime weekend drivers across the country have THC in their systems, as of 2013. This is the last time research was conducted, and experts think the number is even higher now, as it represents a 4% increase over a five-year-period. Adding to the difficulties, measurements of THC in a person’s system are not reliable indicators of their physical driving capabilities. Using the measurements as indicators is “unsupported by science, raising concerns that some unsafe motorists might go free while others could be wrongfully convicted,” according to the agency. They suggest that law enforcement use two forms of testing to determine if someone is unsafe to drive, including a positive test for THC and some sort of physiological or behavioral evidence from law enforcement that a driver was impaired by the drug.
Retain an Experienced Omaha Marijuana Possession Lawyer Today
Driving under the influence can prove deadly, but Nebraska is doing everything it can to stop the flow of cannabis into the state. Law enforcement monitors the interstates very closely and targets out-of-state drivers, as well as those who appear to be distracted or under the influence. If you or a loved one has been picked up by law enforcement while in possession of the leafy green substance, it’s important to retain an experienced Omaha marijuana possession lawyer right away, so you can start building your defense and move on with your life. For a free consultation with Daniel Stockmann, call (844) 545-3022 today.