What You Need to Know About Driving While High

by Salvatore P. Ciulla on December 8, 2014 · 0 comments

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Much has been made of the similarities and differences between alcohol, a legal drug, and marijuana, legal in just a few states but still illegal under federal law. While advocates compare addiction and safety numbers, detractors talk gateways and health issues.


No matter which side of the issue you’re on, even in states where marijuana is legal, driving while high—on anything—is now and always will be illegal. Here are a few things you need to know about marijuana, driving, and safety.


  1. Marijuana slows reaction time. Studies have shown marijuana affects users by reducing their capacity for multitasking, narrowing peripheral vision and reducing reaction times. This can affect your ability to react to traffic patterns, turn and change lanes, and tune out distractions when driving a car.
  2. There is no legal limit. THC can stay present in your blood stream for days and even weeks after you smoke, so determining a level of impairment could be tricky. A few states are experimenting with a saliva test for THC, but until there’s a legal threshold, any level of THC could be considered illegal while driving.
  3. Studies, legal limits and testing are on their way. Due to the increase in states where medical and recreational marijuana use is legal, the University of Colorado, the National Safety Council, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and other agencies are studying marijuana, intoxication levels, and their effect on driving to come up with limits and guidelines for public safety. If your state has no specific laws now, it will soon.


The Law Office of Salvatore Ciulla located in Orange County, California, represents individuals accused of murder and manslaughter, aggravated assault, burglary, theft and embezzlement, child abuse and domestic violence, narcotics possession and sales, drunk driving (DUI) and vehicular homicide, sexual assault and three strikes cases. We also take Juvenile Court cases and all misdemeanor offenses.


Our mission is to provide the best legal representation and counsel to all clients. Every client and every case is important. Call us at 714-542-0500 for a free analysis of your case and/or charges, or contact us at SalCiullaLaw.com.

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