Crash Rates Jump in Wake of Marijuana Legalization

Crash rates spiked with the legalization of recreational marijuana use and retail sales in California, Colorado, Nevada, Oregon and Washington, a new study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and another by the affiliated Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) show.

However, the preliminary results of a separate IIHS study of injured drivers who visited emergency rooms in California, Colorado and Oregon showed that drivers who used marijuana alone were no more likely to be involved in crashes than drivers who hadn’t used the drug. That is consistent with a 2015 study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that found that a positive test for marijuana was not associated with increased risk of being involved in a police-reported crash.

“Our latest research makes it clear that legalizing marijuana for recreational use does increase overall crash rates,” says IIHS-HLDI President David Harkey. “That’s obviously something policymakers and safety professionals will need to address as more states move to liberalize their laws — even if the way marijuana affects crash risk for individual drivers remains uncertain.”

To read the full article from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, click here: https://www.iihs.org/news/detail/crash-rates-jump-in-wake-of-marijuana-legalization-new-studies-show

For more information on the International Academy on the Science and Impact of Cannabis, and to join, please visit www.IASIC1.org.

Visit the IASIC Library here (https://iasic1.org/library/). The IASIC Library is intended as a user-friendly reference of the published medical literature.

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