Since medical marijuana became legal in Arizona, drugged driving is on the rise. Or is it? Arizona has faced the same challenges as other states that have legalized marijuana for various purposes, recreational use included. However, it is not marijuana that poses the threat as much as it has been prescription drug use that has increased drugged driving.
In recent years, while still a problem, drunk driving has been decreasing while incidents of drugged driving have been increasing exponentially. What this means is that law enforcement officers are seeking new ways to determine the best methods for keeping the roadways safe from this new menace: drugged driving. As spring turns to summer, American roadways become crowded with vacationers and road-trippers, especially in a state with some of the most beautiful scenic driving routes in the country.
While motorists should remember to drive defensively to mitigate the potential for being involved in an accident with a drugged driver, there is generally little a person can do if their car is in the pathway of a reckless driver who is capable of drugged driving. In order to combat the dangers posed by reckless, drunk, and drugged drivers, it is important to know more about the mind of someone who engages in this type of behavior.
Drugged Driving vs. Drunk Driving
While drugged driving is becoming more of a problem, according to recent studies, drunk driving is more likely to cause fatalities, and resources should not be pulled away from the prevention of alcohol-related accidents. According to the findings of one study, this is because the effects of alcohol on a driver tend to be more severe than the effects of the most common drugs.
While the study in no way encourages the recreational use of drugs, it highlights an interesting problem. After analyzing data with regard to fatal car accidents involving drug and alcohol abuse, it was found that the odds of a drugged driver being involved in a fatal car accident were 1.66 whereas the same for a drunk driver was 14.67. The study also found that there was no significant risk increase for drivers who mixed the use of drugs with alcohol as compared to drivers who were victim by alcohol alone.
Drugs by Any Other Name Is still Reckless Driving
Hundreds of thousands of Americans use prescription medications on a daily basis, many of which have serious side effects. Everyone has seen the prescription drug commercials where the first 30 seconds are devoted to explaining the health benefits of taking the drug whereas the last 10 seconds is a quickly read or scrolling message about the potential side effects and possible negative interactions with other medications. Some of the most common side effects of any prescription drugs are nausea and drowsiness, while negative drug interactions can cause bouts of dizziness and lightheadedness.
Both drunk driving and drugged driving are serious problems that need to be continuously addressed in order to protect innocent motorists from harm. If a driver injures you in Phoenix who was under the influence of any intoxicating substance, call the Thompson Law Firm, PLLC to talk to someone about your options for recovery. Our professionals understand the unique nature of impaired driving accidents and can work quickly without ignoring damages.