Claim: Drugged Driving Car Accidents Are On The Rise
Sadly, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says this claim is a fact of life in 2015.
According to the NHTSA, increased awareness has led to a sharp decline in drunk driving so far this millennium, but more and more drivers are getting on the road stoned or high on drugs, leading to more marijuana truck accidents and car accident injuries in particular.
“The latest Roadside Survey raises significant questions about drug use and highway safety,” says NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind. “The rising prevalence of marijuana and other drugs is a challenge to everyone who is dedicated to saving lives and reducing crashes.”
While the number of drunk drivers has dropped by 75% since the 1970s, a sharp increase in drugged driving led to one in four drivers testing positive for at least one drug that affects safety on U.S. roads last year.
The number of weekend drivers with drugs in their system has gone up particularly high, leading to more marijuana truck accidents involving long-haul truck drivers just trying to do their jobs.
Claim: Marijuana Actually Makes You A Safer Driver!
Despite this common wisdom among some pot smokers, this advice is dead wrong.
The NHTSA says that marijuana use by drivers is associated with a much greater risk of crashes, and that not only are marijuana users more likely to suffer common car crash injuries, they’re more likely to be involved in fatal marijuana car accidents.
Plus, stoned drivers tend to be male, who have long had a higher risk of fatalities in car crashes.
Claim: Every Year There Are Five Million Car Crashes In The U.S.
Although technically true, the NHTSA estimates that at least 10 million additional crashes go unreported each year. In those five million reported crashes, more than three million Americans are injured, while 40,000 lose their lives.
Driving has always been dangerous, but with marijuana being effectively legalized in some states, and with dangerous new legal, synthetic highs popping up in gas stations nationwide, drivers should take special caution on the roads this year.
Buckle up. Read more. More research here.