A recent study published in JAMA Pediatrics found that a significant number of college-age adults are placing themselves at serious risk by driving under the influence of marijuana.
Specifically, the study reached the following conclusions:
- Forty-four percent of college-age men admit to driving under the influence of marijuana in the last month. A much smaller percentage of college-age men – just 12 percent – admit to driving drunk in the same time frame.
- College-age women are less likely to drive while stoned – just 9 percent admitted to getting behind the wheel after marijuana use in the last month. However, about 35 percent of college-age women said they were a passenger in a car with someone they know had been smoking pot.
- Marijuana is believed to be involved in about 12 percent of all fatal crashes involving 16- to 20-year-olds.
This study serves as a reminder that an individual does not have to be under the influence of alcohol in order to be charged with DUI. If you have smoked marijuana or have taken any drugs, including prescription pills, before getting behind the wheel, you could potentially be pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence. While there have been many studies published that show drivers are more cautious when driving after smoking marijuana, a conviction for driving under the influence of drugs carries the same serious repercussions as driving under the influence of alcohol, including jail time, fines and a criminal record.
If you have a college kid at home for the summer, stress the importance of staying sober when behind the wheel. With that said, we know that everyone makes mistakes. A Florida DUI Defense Lawyer at Whittel & Melton can help you if you or your child has been arrested for DUI. Keep in mind that if you have been charged with driving under the influence of marijuana, it does not necessarily have to result in a conviction. The state prosecutor must prove you committed every element of the DUI offense beyond a reasonable doubt. This can be a very difficult burden to meet, and oftentimes these charges can be reduced or even dismissed.
A Florida DUI Attorney at Whittel & Melton can help you create the best legal defense for your particular situation. For a free consultation, please call us today statewide and toll-free at 866-608-5529 or contact us online.