The Colorado State Patrol reports that in the first quarter of this year, arrests for marijuana DUI decreased by about one-third from the number in the same period in 2016. However, state officials caution that this doesn't mean that fewer people are driving while under the influence of the drug, which has been legal for recreational use in our state for three years now.
Back when recreational marijuana was legalized, the Colorado Deportment of Transportation (CDOT) implemented a program called "Drive High, Get a DUI" to increase awareness that driving under the influence of marijuana can put you in as much legal jeopardy as driving drunk can. CDOT has also formed partnerships with ride sharing businesses in a "plan a ride before you're high" program.
Unfortunately, too many people still believe that they can drive safely with marijuana in their system. In a CDOT survey, more than half of the respondents said that they believed that they could safely drive while they were high on marijuana. Half of those who said that they had used the drug within the past month admitted that they had driven while high.
A spokesman for CDOT says that these admissions to driving high are disturbing. He adds, "We're pleased with the awareness, but we're not so pleased with the behaviors that are actually happening."
It's more difficult for law enforcement officers to verify that a driver is under the influence of marijuana or other drugs than it is to confirm alcohol intoxication without a confession. However, if you've been involved in a crash that was caused by someone who may have been impaired by drugs, an experienced Colorado attorney can work to seek the evidence needed to build the strongest possible civil case to get you proper compensation.
Source: TIME Magazine, "Colorado's Marijuana DUIs Are Down 33%," Abigail Abrams, accessed Sep. 07, 2017