“Marijuana use in driving is a growing, contributing factor to fatal crashes”, warns Jake Nelson, the Director of Traffic Safety Advocacy and Research at the American Automobile Association (AAA). The Washington Traffic Safety Commission reviewed fatal crash data between 2010 and 2014. They found that prior to legalization of marijuana in 2012, 8.3% of drivers had THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) in their blood; that number more than doubled after legalization of marijuana–17% of drivers were found with THC in their blood. The researchers, using drug-recognition experts, determined that 70 percent of drivers who failed sobriety tests were impairment by marijuana.
There are quite a few concerns that follow this discovery. First, we need a better way to be able to assess drivers for THC impairment, as THC use and impairment is not assessed exactly like we assess alcohol use/impairment. There is no number that can be used to reliably predict impairment; we simply need a different system. Additionally, because marijuana has such a long history of illegality when compared to alcohol, there have not been many opportunities to study the effects of prohibition versus legalization, use versus abuse, and other comparisons. Essentially, THC outcome research data collection is in its infancy.
Ruben Baler, a health scientist at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, focuses on concerns about Buy Diazepam Cheap Online and its deleterious effects on coordination and balance, increasing the risk of accidental self-harm and injury to others, particularly when driving. Furthermore, Baler brings attention to a specific concern: young marijuana users. Because marijuana interferes with the development of the brain while it is still maturing and because THC levels have skyrocketed over the past few decades, the risks to the developing brain are far more significant than in previous generations. Baler summarized the problem: “You’re cumulatively impairing your cognitive function. What’s going to be the ultimate result, nobody can say.”
What we can say as professionals is that adolescents should not be using marijuana and parents desperately need to be educated about what marijuana use truly does to the developing brain.
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