Everyone in Missouri knows of the dangers of drinking alcohol before driving. Studies have repeatedly linked operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol to an increased risk of causing a car accident. Worse, it seems that nearly everyone knows of someone who has been hurt or even killed in such an accident.
The effects of marijuana on someone’s ability to drive, however, are much less understood. This is largely because studying an illegal drug requires government oversight that makes many laboratories reconsider. However, a new and extensive report on marijuana has looked at all of the studies that are available, and found that marijuana significantly reduces someone’s driving skills.
New Report Links Marijuana to Increased Risk of Car Accidents
A new report by the National Academies Press, The Health Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids, extensively covers all of the available research dealing with marijuana. One of the many aspects that the report touches on is how much marijuana impacts how well someone can drive, and whether smoking marijuana increases the odds of causing a car crash.
Even though the report has harsh words for the quality of the studies dealing with driving and smoking marijuana, it nevertheless decides that there is “substantial evidence” linking marijuana to car accidents.
Report Admits Uncertainty Still Exists
The report, however, refused to measure just how closely marijuana and car crashes are linked. This was because the studies that the report relied on were fraught with issues, and because measuring how stoned a driver is at a given time is far from an exact science. Because of this, the report refused to state how much more often stoned drivers were likely to cause a car accident: There simply wasn’t the data to make it accurate.
Missouri’s DWI Statute Covers Marijuana
Importantly, Missouri’s law prohibiting drunk driving also covers drugged driving, as well. The statute, M.R.S. 577.010, makes it illegal to drive “while in an intoxicated condition.” This allows police to arrest stoned drivers, too, because they still fall under the definition of “intoxicated.”
Kansas City Car Accident Attorneys at the Smith Law Office
The fact that it’s illegal for others to drive while under the influence of marijuana makes a huge difference if you have been hurt in an accident that they caused. If they were stoned, it provides evidence that they were the ones who caused the crash, and that you were an innocent victim. This makes it far easier for you to get the compensation that you need to make a full recovery from the personal injuries you suffered in the crash.
Having a personal injury attorney at your side in these situations makes a huge difference. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a crash involving a stoned driver in Kansas City or St. Joseph, call the car accident and personal injury lawyers at the Smith Law Office at (816) 875-9373 or contact them online. By representing you both in and out of court, they can ensure you get the compensation you need to make the full recovery you deserve.