Tuesday, February 19, 2013

A Closer Look at those who smoke Marijuana and Drive - DUI or Ok to Drive, lawyers ask?

What better way to evaluate the possible effects of marijuana on driving than to have a study with actual drivers get in a vehicle with a driver's education instructor, California DUI attorneys proclaim.  This YouTube  CNN video with over 600,000 viewings depicts 3 such drivers who smoked alot of marijuana before driving a special testing course, say California DUI lawyers.

"Blueberry Trainwreck" marijuana was smoked in Thurston County on site.  Blood tests were gathered later.

In Washington, the arbitrary "legal limit" for marijuana in your system when you drive is 5 nanograms.

A medical marijuana patient driver named 27 year old Addy, a heavy regular user, drove "actually fine" with 15.9 nanograms in her system.  That's three times the legal limit.

She did have one problem.  While learning the course, Addy turned too sharp at a tricky stop sign, knocking over the posted sign.

Then they started giving her more marijuana where she was 7 times the legal limit.  She still drove ok and the instructor had no problems with her.

The second driver is 34 year old Dylan, a weekend smoker, who had no marijuana in his system.  Marijuana was given to him.  After 3/10th of a gram of pot, 5 times the legal limit, he was doing fine behind the wheel.

The final driver is 56 year old Jeff, an occasional user with nothing in his system.  Marijuana was given to him.   He was pretty buzzed, drove cautious and slower than he usually would, which could catch the eye of a DUI officer on the road.  He was 4 times the limit with nearly 22 nanograms in his system.  He drove good.  Slow but acceptable driving.  "He did real well," says the instructor.

Then they stopped driving.  They smoked alot more marijuana, got real stoned and their driving started to show it according to observers.

Dylan started having trouble remembering how to drive the course.  "What is this cone in the middle?"  He turned early and left the track.  He got a second chance but while going around a turn the instructor had to grab the wheel to prevent him from hitting a cameraman that got a little too close.   A cop said he would have stopped him had he seen that driving on the road.

Jeff's driving got worse as he smoked more and more, too.  He backed into and onto a cone.  After 9/10ths of a gram, he drove very slow.  A cop remarked he should not be on the road.  Jeff agreed.  He agreed.

Now Addy, after 9/10ths of a gram, was feeling more aggressive and excited about being behind the wheel so stoned.   She made no major mistakes.  When an officer was asked if he would have pulled her over, he hesitated and said:  "Uh, borderline."

They didn't stop with Addy.  They gave her more!  Up to 1.4 grams, she got behind the wheel yet again.  She was having problems and said she was "way more stoned" over & over.  "I definitely shouldn't be driving."  She continued to drive aggressively and seemed to be driving fine.

Then 30 seconds into it, Addy backed up into and over a cone.  The cop said:  "That would have been indicative of backing into a pole or a citizen on a sidewalk."   The instructor, the cop and Addy all agreed she should not be driving and would be a danger (after 1.4 grams)!

Later, they were given field tests.  While the cop claimed all 3 would be arrested, the only bad they showed was Jeff not being able to touch his nose.

Does that make this study inconclusive?  I would think so since it appears the cops knew how much pot was given to these 3 volunteers.

Let's face it.  More pot was smoked than these 3 would have ever smoked before driving.  More studies should be done.  More San Diego California news stations should be looking into this DUI issue like this.