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Legal marijuana use no excuse for drugged driving

Like a growing minority of other states, Nevada allows its residents to use marijuana legally, even without a medical need, under certain circumstances. This law has been on the books since 2017 following a ballot measure. Obviously, this law was not intended to be a license for Nevada motorists to engage in drugged driving. Most people recognize that such behavior is just as dangerous as drunk driving.

Some studies suggest, however, that the mere liberalization of state laws about marijuana use can lead to an increase in drugged driving accidents. The studies surveyed a number of states that have legalized the drug and then compared them to other states where recreational marijuana use remains prohibited. The results were that collision-related insurance claims increased in those states that had legalized the drug.

Those who reported on the surveys observed that when a drug, like marijuana, is legal, more people use it. Thus, more people may choose to drive while under the influence of the drug. As driving high can be a lot like driving drunk, it is no surprise that the frequency of accidents increases as a result.

Others, however, have cautioned that marijuana can stay in a person's system for a long time after they actually use the drug. There is no reliable way to scientifically measure how high a person is or, for that matter, how recently the person last used marijuana.

No matter how one feels about the drug, the bottom line is that people using it must do so without endangering the lives of others on the road. If a drugged driver does cause an accident while under the influence, they may have to pay compensation to their victims.

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