As drugged driving rates across the country increase, the federal administration finds itself facing new safety challenges. While people have begun to realize and understand very well the dangers of drunk driving, they do not seem to be taking so seriously the dangers of driving while stoned, or even after taking prescription drugs.
The growing prevalence of lifestyle diseases like diabetes, or heart disease means that a number of Americans are now on medications for several conditions. Elderly persons may be on more than one medication. Medications like antidepressants, anti-hypertension drugs and even over-the-counter medications for cough and cold can increase your risk of drugged driving.
Many common medications can cause drivers to become dangerously drowsy. Vicodin, Demerol, Dolophine, and Oxycontin are particularly likely to impair your driving skills. These drugs can slow thought processes, reflexes, and reaction times, so driving or operating machinery while using them should always be avoided. Never, ever combine legal prescription drugs with illicit street drugs or alcohol. Always thoroughly read the warning labels on any medication you take. If you drive while under the influence of any drug that impairs your driving skills, you not only risk injury to yourself and others and becoming the target of a personal injury suit, but you could also be charged with DUI. Especially if someone is injured, you’ll be fined and face the possibility of going to jail. Even over-the-counter medications can have deadly consequences if you take them and get behind the wheel.
Driving under the influence of marijuana is another serious threat facing today’s motorists. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that the number of drivers driving with alcohol in their system has dropped by nearly 1/3rd since 2007, and by 75 percent since 1973. This is a significant decline. However, over the same period of time, there has been a significant increase in the number of motorists driving under the influence of marijuana or other drugs. In 2004, for instance, as many as one in four motorists in accidents were found with traces of drugs in their system. In all these cases, the drugs were those that could affect a person’s ability to drive safely on the streets.
Can I File an Accident Claim Based on the Other Motorist’s Drugged Driving?
Proving that the other motorist in your accident was under the influence of marijuana at the time, could be more challenging than proving that he was under the influence of alcohol, but it is not impossible. This is because testing for marijuana is still tricky, partly due to the fact that marijuana can continue to remain in the system for days after the drug is ingested
Speak to a Palm Beach car accident attorney about your legal options for compensation after an accident with a drugged driver, even if that driver was just taking legal prescription medications. An attorney will help you identify liable parties in your claim. Call a Palm Beach car accident attorney today to discuss how you can begin filing a claim.