Senator Presses Federal Agency For Update On Marijuana Research Barriers And Impaired Driving Report

Senator Presses Federal Agency For Update On Marijuana Research Barriers And Impaired Driving Report
MJ moment

Sen. John Hickenlooper (D-CO) wants an update on that status of a federal report into research barriers that are inhibiting the development of a standardized test for marijuana impairment on the roads. The senator sent a letter on the issue to the head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on Tuesday, which marked the one-year anniversary of President Joe Biden signing a large-scale infrastructure bill that included language mandating the cannabis report. Under the law, the Department of Transportation (DOT) is required to complete the report by November 2023, so Hickenlooper’s letter serves as a check-in on the agency’s progress halfway through the timeline. The legislation that included the mandate is also aimed at allowing researchers to study the actual marijuana that consumers are purchasing from state-legal dispensaries instead of having to use only government-grown cannabis—but the senator’s letter focused on the impaired driving report component of the overall cannabis section. “Preventing distracted or impaired driving is a key step towards the goal of reducing traffic fatalities and improving roadway safety,” Hickenlooper wrote, adding that “many ambiguities around defining marijuana-impaired driving underscore the importance of clarifying this policy uncertainty.” The senator, who previously served as Colorado’s governor when voters there approved legalization, acknowledged that NHTSA and other federal agencies have published studies on the impact of ending prohibition on impaired driving, but he said that those studies have been “limited to surveys of existing academic literature and therefore only produced findings that are unable to be independently verified scientifically by the agency.” “Due to the statutory classification of marijuana as a controlled substance, federal researchers face barriers not only to evaluating marijuana’s effects on a driver’s performance, but also in developing tests to accurately detect the amount of THC in a driver’s body or determine a THC impairment…

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Source : Senator Presses Federal Agency For Update On Marijuana Research Barriers And Impaired Driving Report

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