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The danger of a Florida auto accident after drug use

A long-standing concern about drivers in Florida is wariness that many who have been out enjoying a night on the town, a day at the beach, a sporting event or a social gathering will become a drunk driver, risking the life and limb of themselves and others. However, studies have indicated that the number of drivers going out on the road after drinking is declining, but the number who is driving after using drugs is increasing.

One study indicated that the number of drivers who were driving after drinking had dropped by one-third over the past eight years. It has lowered by more than 75 percent since the study was initiated in 1973. Nonetheless, this study showed that people were increasingly driving after using marijuana and prescription medications.

The rising acceptance and growing legality of marijuana use is believed to be at least partially responsible for the greater number of people who feel as if it is safe to drive after using it. As for prescription medications, there is a belief that since it is legal and prescribed, the danger when driving after using these drugs is minimal.

Another study, looking into the cause of an auto accident with marijuana, found that drivers who used it were more likely to be involved in a crash. That risk must be quantified by who it is that is having the accidents. Since it is predominately young men who have accidents, so too are young men likely to choose to drive after using marijuana.

The study was conducted in Virginia Beach and looked at more than 3,000 drivers who had accidents over 20 months. It also looked at 6,000 drivers who did not have an accident. Drivers who had a blood alcohol content of more than 0.08 percent were four times as likely to crash. Drivers who had a BAC of 0.15 percent or higher were 12 times as likely to crash. The research is still trying to determine the influence of drugs on crashes.

Regardless of these studies, people who have been hurt in a car accident need to have a full investigation with their interests in mind to determine why it happened. Serious injuries and fatalities can result and there can be massive accompanying medical costs. Discussing the matter with a legal professional experienced in pursuing cases after a drunk driver or drugged driver went out on the road is imperative.

Source: NHTSA.gov, "NHTSA Releases Two New Studies on Impaired Driving on U.S. Roads," Feb. 6, 2015

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