A new study has concluded that state tests of the impairment of drivers who have smoked cannabis do not have any scientific basis.
Thus, the study concluded, cannabis consumption affects different drivers in different ways, rendering the current testing for cannabis levels in drivers to be all but futile. This is in marked contrast to the testing of a driver’s blood-alcohol level, which provides a reasonable indicator of that driver’s capacity to drive.
“It’s an attempt to try to do an apples-to-apples comparison with blood alcohol concentration. They found out that these things can’t really be compared.” – Chris Lindsey, an analyst with the Marijuana Policy Project
Meanwhile, 12 other states prohibit the presence of any THC in the bloodstream whatsoever.
“There is understandably a strong desire by both lawmakers and the public to create legal limits for marijuana impairment in the same manner we do alcohol. In the case of marijuana, this approach is flawed and not supported by scientific research.”
Doney’s viewpoint was echoed by New York University Professor Mark Kleiman, a specialist in drug and criminal policy. Kleiman noted that a driver can exhibit traces of THC in his or her bloodstream for several weeks after having consumed cannabis, a fact that he says makes the current laws governing cannabis and driving nonsensical.
“A law against driving with THC in your bloodstream is not a law you can know you are obeying except by never smoking marijuana or never driving.”
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