IIHS Claims Marijuana Legalization Causes Crashes

It’s always nice to get a break from the endless stream of industry marketing materials about electrification, though this week’s impromptu theme still involves going green. Following news that General Motors is considering changing its drug testing policies to exclude marijuana, there has been heavy coverage of an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) study claiming states that have legalized recreational use of cannabis are seeing more crashes.

But the framing seems wildly irresponsible as it fails to highlight the problem being heavily tied to individuals operating a vehicle under the influence of marijuana and alcohol combined. It’s more or less what the IIHS attempted to do in 2018 with help from the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI). Our guess is that the duo is seeking out fresh reasons for insurance companies to raise rates in regions that have legalized pot because even their own research complicates the issue.

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Reefer Madness: 'Driving While High' Laws Aren't Based on Science, Says Study

Impairment tests used by authorities in U.S. states where marijuana use is legal in some form have no basis in science, and their results essentially mean nothing, a recent study concludes.

Commissioned by the American Automobile Association’s safety foundation, the study found that no blood test for THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, can accurately determine a driver’s level of impairment, the Associated Press reports.

The finding blows law enforcement’s main method of convicting high drivers into the weeds.

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  • FreedMike Paging Corey...
  • MeJ Seems like every answer here is "no, I don't use my phone while driving except...this, this, and this."C'mon people. Partially guilty is still guilty. Just put the stupid thing away.And, no, I never use my phone while driving. Half the time I just leave it at home because nothing is as important as we like to think it is.
  • BklynPete Oh really? I don't recall the Fiesta and Focus getting recommendations when saddled with that awful DCT. Nor are the last generation Taurus or current Explorer and Escape on their recommended lists.
  • Bobby D'Oppo I won't pretend that yet another earth-splitting land barge is the type of product that speaks to me, but I do think it's worth anticipating some impressive refinements from a new range-topping "volume" model from Porsche. Will it be enough to alleviate the pain of the combustion-powered Boxster twins' looming demise? Hopefully the answer is "Yes!" for Porsche's shareholders, because for me it's a stretch.
  • Jeanbaptiste Seems pricey.