Now that recreational marijuana is legal in Colorado, it is crucial to be aware that you can get a DUI if you drive while high. Driving under the influence of cannabis affects your impairment and is against the law. According to the Colorado Department of Transportation, over 17 percent of DUI arrests in Colorado involve marijuana.
If you are wondering how marijuana impairs your driving ability, what the law says or how you can stay safe, keep reading below.
It is a prosecutable offense
If you consume any amount of cannabis before or while driving, you may face a DUI charge. This is true even if you take the drug for medical purposes. The Colorado DOT says that a DUI arrest for marijuana can get you jail time and tens of thousands of dollars in fines. If you test positive for five nanograms or more of THC, you will meet the Colorado impairment level.
It is dangerous behavior
Consuming cannabis affects these abilities:
- Reaction time
- Hand-eye coordination
- Short-term memory
- Perception of distance
These physiological effects significantly impair your driving abilities. Not only can driving high get you a DUI conviction, but it may also lead to a car accident.
How to stay safe
In order to avoid a DUI arrest and auto collision, the best thing you can do is refuse to drive while under the influence of cannabis. If you consume the drug, find a designated driver, call a cab or use a ridesharing app to get where you need to go. Also, if you are heading home and have marijuana in your car, make sure it is in a sealed container and out of reach. Wait until you get to your private home to consume the drug legally.
With all the benefits of legal recreational marijuana, you must be responsible and careful. With this information, you can make smart choices to avoid a DUI conviction.