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Recreational Cannabis May Be Leading to More Car Accidents in Colorado

Posted on in Car Accident

Larimer County car accident attorney marijuana intoxicationIn 2012, voters passed Colorado Amendment 64, which legalized marijuana for medicinal and recreational use throughout the state. Officially implemented in 2014, Amendment 64 has brought in millions in tax revenue for the state. Much of that revenue has gone toward creating low-income housing programs, increasing mental health programs in Colorado prisons, and further developing health education programs in schools throughout the state. 

However, while many of the benefits of legalized cannabis have been well documented across the country, one substantial negative that has not been discussed is the marked increase in motor vehicle collisions within states that have legalized recreational marijuana. With increased collisions comes the increased risk of serious, or even fatal, injuries. Those who have been injured in a motor vehicle accident should contact a legal team to learn about their options for pursuing compensation from a negligent driver. 

Accidents on the Rise

In 2017, legal marijuana sales hit a record number of $9.7 billion nationwide. However, a recent study suggests that legal marijuana may be leading to an increase in car accidents. The study, which was conducted by the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI), used crash statistics from three states with legalized recreational marijuana (Colorado, Washington, and Oregon), and compared those numbers to surrounding states that have not legalized marijuana. The conclusions were striking: motor vehicle collisions have risen by 6% since marijuana legalization in the three states used in the study. 

An additional study was conducted through the use of police reported motor vehicle accidents. The results indicated that there has indeed been an increase in collisions of more than 5% in these three states. 

Marijuana use can impact a driver’s reaction time and perception. Despite the fact that driving while under the influence of marijuana is illegal in all 50 states, hundreds of thousands of drivers choose to endanger themselves and others by driving while intoxicated. 

Contact a Fort Collins Automobile Accident Lawyer

Here in the state of Colorado, accidents involving drugs or alcohol are much more prevalent than we would like to think. Despite statewide initiatives to decrease intoxicated driving, the problem is seemingly on the rise. If you or a loved one are injured in a motor vehicle collision, it is likely that the accident was caused by the negligent actions of another driver. If you have been involved in a car accident that you suspect was caused by a driver who was under the influence of marijuana, Hoggatt Law Office, P.C. can help you understand your options and work to ensure you receive compensation for your damages. To schedule a free consultation with a Larimer County personal injury attorney, call us today at 970-225-2190.

Sources:

https://kdvr.com/2018/10/19/studies-car-accidents-up-in-colorado-other-states-with-legalized-recreational-marijuana/

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/colorado-first-state-legalize-marijuana-162942435.html

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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

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Fort Collins, CO 80524

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