Roadside Screening Reveals High Rate of Cannabis Influence Among Drivers

Roadside Screening Reveals High Rate of Cannabis Influence Among Drivers

Roadside Screening Reveals High Rate of Cannabis Influence Among Drivers


With the increasing legalization of cannabis across various states and countries, there has been a growing concern about its impact on road safety. Recent studies and roadside screenings have revealed a high rate of cannabis influence among drivers, raising alarm bells for traffic safety authorities and health professionals. This article delves into the prevalence of cannabis-impaired driving, its implications, and potential solutions to this emerging public health issue.

The Prevalence of Cannabis-Impaired Driving

According to a study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, an estimated 14.8 million drivers reported getting behind the wheel within one hour after using marijuana in the past 30 days. In another survey by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), it was found that 12.6% of drivers tested positive for THC, the active ingredient in cannabis, during weekend nighttime hours. These statistics highlight the growing prevalence of cannabis-impaired driving and its potential risks.

Implications of Cannabis-Impaired Driving

Driving under the influence of cannabis can significantly impair motor skills, reaction time, and judgment, leading to an increased risk of road accidents. A study published in the British Medical Journal found that drivers who consumed cannabis within three hours of driving were nearly twice as likely to cause a vehicle collision as those who were not under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Furthermore, the NHTSA reports that during 2018, 46% of drivers who were killed in crashes and tested for drugs, tested positive, with cannabis being one of the most commonly detected substances.

Potential Solutions to Cannabis-Impaired Driving

Addressing the issue of cannabis-impaired driving requires a multi-faceted approach. This includes stricter laws and penalties, increased public awareness, and improved roadside testing methods. For instance, some states have implemented zero-tolerance laws for THC or its metabolites, while others have set per se limits for THC, similar to the blood alcohol concentration limits for alcohol-impaired driving. Public awareness campaigns can also play a crucial role in educating drivers about the risks of cannabis-impaired driving. Lastly, developing accurate and reliable roadside testing methods for drug impairment can help law enforcement officers identify and apprehend drug-impaired drivers more effectively.


In conclusion, the high rate of cannabis influence among drivers is a pressing issue that requires immediate attention and action. As more states and countries continue to legalize cannabis, it is crucial to address the risks associated with cannabis-impaired driving proactively. This includes implementing stricter laws and penalties, raising public awareness, and improving roadside testing methods. By doing so, we can ensure a safer driving environment for all road users.

By C.N.W

Keywords: cannabis-impaired driving, roadside screening, THC, traffic safety, public health issue


  • AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. (2019). New Research Finds Dangers of Drowsy Driving Comparable to Drunk Driving. Retrieved from
  • National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. (2018). 2018 Fatal Motor Vehicle Crashes: Overview. Retrieved from
  • British Medical Journal. (2012). Acute cannabis consumption and motor vehicle collision risk. Retrieved from
Scroll to Top