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 Claim: If we legalize pot there will be many more traffic accidents

Excerpt from the Senate Special Committee On Illegal Drugs report:
CH. 8 - DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF CANNABIS
The Committee feels it is quite likely that cannabis makes users more cautious, partly because they are aware of their deficiencies and compensate by reducing speed and taking fewer risks. However, because what we are dealing with is no longer the consequences on the users themselves, but the possible consequences of their behaviour on others, the Committee feels that it is important to opt for the greatest possible caution with respect to the issue of driving under the influence of cannabis.

Given what we have seen, we conclude the following:

Cannabis alone, particularly in low doses, has little effect on the skills involved in automobile driving. Cannabis leads to a more cautious style of driving. However it has a negative impact on decision time and trajectory. This in itself does not mean that drivers under the influence of cannabis represent a traffic safety risk.
• A significant percentage of impaired drivers test positive for cannabis and alcohol together. The effects of cannabis when combined with alcohol are more significant than is the case for alcohol alone.
• Between 5% and 12% of drivers may drive under the influence of cannabis; this percentage increases to over 20% for young men under 25 years of age.


Online Resources: Driving Studies
U.K. Driving Study, 2000 - The Influence of Cannabis on Driving
U.S. Dept. of Transportation Driving Performance Study, 1999
Canadian (UofT) Driving Study, 1999 - Marijuana Not A Factor In Driving Accidents
Australian Driving Study, 1998
Netherlands Driving Study, 1994 - Inst. for Human Psychopharmacology, U. of Limburg

Other Online Resources: "Cannabis and Driving" links
CannabisLink.ca: Driving Study Links
The Family Council on Drug Awareness: Cannabis and Driving
Erowid: Cannabis & Driving
Cannabis Culture Magazine: Stoned drivers are safe drivers



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