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…The car is central to film’s exposition of stoner life. Driving-while-baked is shown as problematic, if hilariously so, because it is risky and sometimes scary and more likely to bring you into contact with the police than staying somewhere quiet. In other words, plenty of pop culture suggests that pot and cars are probably two things better left unmixed.
Yet, stoners themselves often argue to the contrary, that scientific evidence proves stoned driving to be safe driving. When I was in college, I heard several references to a mythological study conducted in the Netherlands – my friends would have said it was done ‘in Amsterdam’ – which showed that driving high was not only safer than driving drunk but also safer than driving straight.
Tag Archives | Drunk Driving
Nothing spices up an evening like crashing your motor home into a bar at closing time and when you live in Boring, Oregon things need some spice. According to the Oregonian, Larry Dale Karasch did just that in the early hours of August 25th, 2013.
“A man intentionally drove his motor home into the Timber Pub & Grub tavern, in Boring, early Saturday as the establishment was closing down for the night, Clackamas County authorities reported.
Only a small number of people were still milling around at the time of the 2 a.m. incident, and no one was hurt, the sheriff’s office said. Police found the driver walking around afterward. “
Brian Palmer discovers that it’s an open and shut case, for Slate:
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A new study suggests that legalizing medical marijuana reduces traffic fatalities. The authors noted that legalizing marijuana reduces alcohol consumption, and people are more wary of driving high than drunk. Which drug is actually more dangerous on the road?
Alcohol, and it’s not even close. It’s hard to directly compare alcohol and marijuana, because driving impairment depends on dosage and the two drugs tend to affect different skills. (Pot makes drivers worse at mindless tasks like staying in a lane, while alcohol undermines behaviors that require more attention like yielding to pedestrians or taking note of stop signs.) Nevertheless, Yale psychiatrist Richard Sewell reviewed the academic literature on driving while intoxicated in a 2009 article, and found that alcohol is significantly more dangerous. Real-world data from auto accidents indicate that a drunk driver is approximately 10 times more likely to cause a fatal accident than a stoned driver.
When someone drives a vehicle while drunk there are plenty of road side tests that police can perform to confirm the drivers intoxication. For many other drugs, such as marijuana and cocaine, there are signs of intoxication, but no immediate method of proof. Often, urine or blood samples must be taken at the police station, which must then be processed to confirm the what and how much of the substance taken. New develops allow a person’s sweat to give more instant results.The Raw Story reports:
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A new technology that analyzes the sweat from a person’s fingertips looks to revolutionize the drug testing market, providing on-site results in minutes with a test so advanced it can even detect marijuana intoxication.
Using gold nanoparticles and special antibodies, the tech produced by British firm Intelligent Fingerprinting latches on to metabolites on the fingerprint and turns a specific color depending on which drug byproducts are detected.
It’s dangerous enough having drunk drivers on the road, but it’s even more dangerous when those drivers are transporting nuclear weapons. The Washington Post reports:
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Federal agents hired to transport nuclear weapons and components sometimes got drunk while on convoy missions, a government watchdog said Monday. In an incident last year, police detained two agents who went to a bar during an assignment.
The Energy Department’s assistant inspector general, Sandra D. Bruce, said her office reviewed 16 alcohol-related incidents involving agents, candidate-agents and others from the government’s Office of Secure Transportation between 2007 through 2009. Nearly 600 federal agents ship nuclear weapons, weapon components and special nuclear material across the U.S.
Two incidents in particular raised red flags, the report said, because they happened during secure transportation missions while agents checked into local hotels while on extended missions. In these cases, the vehicles were placed in “safe harbor,” meaning they were moved to secure locations.