Legalization of marijuana has led to increased deaths on the roadsFebruary 1, 2020
The number of accidents committed by drivers under the influence of drugs has increased in the USA
A new study showed that after the legalization of marijuana in the US state of Washington, there were more fatal accidents committed by drivers with tetrahydrocannabinol in the blood.
Some US states have recently authorized recreational use of marijuana for occasional non-medical use. To find out if this decision of the authorities could affect the accident rate, experts from the American Automobile Association (AAA) conducted a study using the example of the state of Washington. They analyzed the number of fatal accidents over a 10-year period — five years before and five years after the legalization of marijuana in 2012. The results showed a clear increase in the number of fatal crashes involving drivers in whose blood tetrahydrocannabinol was found – one of the main cannabinoids found in cannabis inflorescences and leaves.
Until 2013, it was found in 8.8% of Washington drivers who died in traffic accidents, and after the legalization of marijuana, the analysis for the content of tetrahydrocannabinol in the blood turned out to be positive in 21.4% of fatal cases. The number of accidents caused by drivers under the influence of marijuana in absolute numbers increased from 56 accidents per year to 130. Currently, marijuana is allowed for recreational use in 11 US states and the District of Columbia.
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