Driving under the influence of drugs is a serious threat to road safety.
Drugged driving is illegal and puts the life of the driver, passengers, and other motorists on the road at risk of injury and death. While all types of drugs lead to impairment of the senses, each drug affects the brain differently. An individual under the influence of drugs has compromised attention, reaction time, perception, judgement, balance, motor skills, and coordination. Drugged driving can interfere with any of these vital functions while driving, leading to serious accidents. (Read – St. Louis Accident Attorney Examines Driving While on Narcotics)
Drugs that Lead to Impairment
Drugged driving can refer to the use of recreational drugs such as:
Legally purchased prescription drugs and over-the-counter prescription drugs include:
- anti-anxiety medications
- hydrocodone (Vicodin)
- sleeping pills
Recreational drugs lead to impairment as they induce a state of drowsiness. Certain recreational drugs also cause hallucinations, an increase in aggressive and reckless behaviour, and dizziness. Prescription drugs can cause a drugged driver to experience drowsiness, disconnection and lapses in judgement, lethargy, loss of coordination and loss of mental alertness. Some medications can cause seizures. In addition, if recreational drugs and prescription drugs are consumed with alcohol, the results are far more dangerous.
Drugged Driving Statistics
- According to a 2014 study released by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), about 10 million individuals 12 years and older were reported driving under the influence of illicit drugs.
- The same survey reported that comparatively, men are more prone to drugged driving than women and the percentage of drugged driving is higher among young adults between the ages of 18 to 25.
- A 2010 study indicated that 47% of drivers who tested positive for drugged driving had consumed prescription drugs, 37% consumed marijuana, and 10% had consumed cocaine.
- A NHTSA study in 2009 revealed that about 18% of drivers killed in car crashes tested positive for drugs.
- In 2010, about one-fourth of drivers in deadly drug-related crashes were 50 years or older and tested positive for narcotics and anti-depressants.
- Drugged driving is a leading cause of death among those aged 16 to 19 years.
St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer
If you have been a victim of a drugged driving accident, seek legal assistance from a St. Louis car accident lawyer. Call The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. at (314) 361-4242 for a free case evaluation.