Recreational marijuana has become a big topic of discussion in Colorado. Since December 2013, anyone over the age of 21 can legally possess up to one ounce of marijuana. Although recreational use is now legal, it is still illegal to consume marijuana in public places, including ski slopes, restaurants, parks, and behind the wheel of a vehicle. The law treats vehicular marijuana use the same as any other form of impaired driving, and the penalties for driving high are steep.
What the Law Says about Marijuana and Driving
Amendment 64 prohibits driving under the influence of any quantity of marijuana. Drivers can transport marijuana in their vehicles, but they can’t drive under its influence. Because marijuana isn’t as easily measured in the body as alcohol, the state passed a law in May 2013 that sets new limits on how much delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) a person can have in his or her bloodstream while operating a vehicle.
Under current law, motorists cannot drive with 5 or more nanograms of THC per milliliter of blood. Additionally, police may arrest any driver who exhibits sign of marijuana-based impairment regardless of blood content. Signs of impairment can include:
- Increased heart rate
- Image distortion
Administrative penalties for refusing a blood test pursuant to an impaired driving stop include mandatory education classes and the placement of an ignition interlock system. If a driver is convicted of driving high, criminal penalties can include fines and jail time in addition to the administrative penalties.
As the law continues to evolve, it will be interesting to see how marijuana-related driving laws develop. Motorists who drive under the influence of drugs are responsible for the injuries that result due to their negligence. At the Klibaner Law Firm, we hold them accountable.
Colorado Personal Injury Lawyers
If you or a loved one has been injured by a motorist who drove high, it’s important to speak to a Colorado personal injury attorney right away. The attorneys at the Klibaner Law Firm can help you obtain the compensation you deserve. Call the office today at (303) 863-1445 to speak to an attorney about your case.
This website has been prepared by Klibaner Law Firm for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.