News

Will traffic deaths rise as states legalize pot?

Will traffic deaths rise as states legalize pot?

DRIVING WHILE STONED: Marijuana can slow decision-making, decrease peripheral vision and impede multitasking — all those are important driving skills. Photo: clipart.com

JOAN LOWY, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Safety advocates worry that more drivers high on pot will lead to a big increase in traffic deaths as states liberalize their marijuana laws.

Researchers who have studied the issue are divided.

Marijuana can slow decision-making, decrease peripheral vision and impede multitasking — all those are important driving skills.

But unlike with alcohol, stoned drivers tend to be aware they’re impaired. And they try to compensate by driving slowly, avoiding risky actions such as passing other cars, and allowing extra room between vehicles.

Combining marijuana with alcohol appears to eliminate that caution and increase driving impairment beyond the effects of either substance alone.

Jonathan Adkins of the Governors Highway Safety Association says legalization of marijuana for recreational use in Colorado and Washington is a wake-up call for safety advocates.

Latest Stories

in Local Sports, Sports, UVA Sports

Virginia Baseball Heading West In the NCAAT

David Rosenberger UVA Baseball

Monday afternoon Virginia Baseball had its name called during the NCAAT Selection Show and it will be featured in UC Santa Barbara's Region as the #3 seed. The Hoos will open up play against #2 seed Southern California, while #4 seed San Diego State will match up with the host #1 UC Santa Barbara.

in Entertainment

PHOTOS: Dogs of Hollywood

amysmart

Check out these celebs and their four-legged friends.

in National

Visitors to NYC’s World Trade Center can ‘see forever’

worldtradeobservatory

The center's new observatory opens Friday, offering spectacular views stretching 50 miles past the Manhattan skyline to the Atlantic Ocean.