Federal Researchers Wrap Up Marijuana DUI Study

This month, federal researchers finished a three-year study on the effects of marijuana on driving. Now that Washington and Colorado legalize the recreational use of marijuana – and with the majority of Americans favoring legalization nationwide – marijuana DUIs have become a hot issue. They have also become an issue that has sparked a great deal of controversy and confusion, especially when it comes to answering the question: when is a driver too high to drive?

In an attempt to answer this question, a group of scientists and volunteers conducted a three-year study using the federally funded University of Iowa's National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS). The NADS is capable of simulating numerous driving situations, including everything from gravel roads to unexpected animals jumping into the roadway.

As part of the study, volunteers were required to use marijuana, a combination of marijuana and alcohol, or a placebo before using the driving simulator. This study is similar to those used to determine legal limits for alcohol DUIs. Researchers announced that they will begin analyzing the data and will release results later this year.

Marijuana DUI Lawyer in Atlanta

The study's primary goal is to determine if there should be a zero tolerance policy for driving under the influence of marijuana, or if there is a safe limit that can be set. Currently, Washington and Colorado establishes the legal marijuana DUI limit at 5 nanograms of THC per ml of blood. Many advocates, lawmakers, and experts disagree with the limit, however, stating that it is not an accurate reflection of how impaired a driver may be, especially if they are regular marijuana users.

While we wait for researchers to release results – and lawmakers to make decisions – it is important to remember that driving under the influence of marijuana is illegal in Georgia. Because testing standards are still in a grey area, marijuana DUI cases are often complex. As such, anyone who is arrested for this offense should be aware that there is often the potential to create an effective defense that works to reduce or dismiss charges and penalties.

If you or someone you love has recently been arrested for driving under the influence of marijuana, an Atlanta DUI lawyer from The Law Offices of Howard J. Weintruab, P.C. can help. To discuss your case and learn more about your defense, request a consultation today by calling 404-907-1536.