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3 Dangerous Mind-Altering Substances That Cause Car Accidents

Driving under the influence of these substances often results in severe car accidents.

Hit by a Drowsy Driving Lawyer

Intoxicated driving causes a significant amount of St. Louis car accidents. This intoxication is not solely caused by alcohol, though, as any substance that alters your perception and behavior affects driving ability. Of course, some are more dangerous than others. Additionally, some drugs are used much more frequently than others, making them more noteworthy. Below, we detail 3 of the most dangerous substances on the road today.

Alcohol

There are hundreds of organizations around the country that advocate against drunk driving. They purchase billboards, commercials, bus stops, and every other advertising medium in an attempt to spread their message. The reason is that alcohol is a factor in a significant portion of car accidents and car accident deaths. In fact, the NHTSA found that alcohol caused 10,497 deaths and 28% of total crashes in 2016. The reasons for these massive numbers are the effects of alcohol and how common drinking is. When you drink, your driving skills are significantly compromised. You are more likely to react slowly, get distracted, make poor choices, and carry out a variety of other dangerous behaviors. Making things even worse, drinking is a big part of many people’s lives. They are often drinking, and when they do, many get behind the wheel.

Allergy Medication

When people come across something they are allergic to, their body has an unpleasant response. This often means watering eyes, runny nose, and a variety of other symptoms. To counteract these effects, they take allergy medication. Though these medications are very effective in quelling allergies, they come with side effects. The one that is dangerous for drivers is these medications’ tendency to cause drowsiness. Drowsy drivers act very similar to drunk drivers and are often just as dangerous. When you take allergy medication, it is generally best not to drive at all. If you need to drive, opt for non-drowsy medicines with fewer adverse side effects.

Marijuana

In certain circles, there is a persistent myth that driving while high on marijuana is relatively safe. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Like alcohol, marijuana comprises a variety of driving skills and frequently leads to accidents. Perhaps what makes this myth believable is that it is not as easy to test marijuana intoxication as it is for alcohol. Because of this, many cases slip through the cracks. An added concern is the effect that alcohol and marijuana have when used in conjunction, which has been found to be significantly worse than either one on its own. Additionally, marijuana possession is still illegal in Missouri, so staying away from it entirely is the most prudent choice.

Though there are harder drugs out there that affect driving ability, we did not include them on this list. The reason is that a smaller portion of the population uses them, and an even smaller portion drives while under their influence. The combination of adverse effects and frequency of use combine to make a substance truly dangerous, and these conditions are met by the 3 on this list. No matter what, you should do your best to stay off the road when your perception is altered. Alternatively, if another driver hits you while under the influence, it is best to speak with an experienced St. Louis car accident lawyer to ensure that your legal right to compensation is protected.

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Updated: November 6, 2019