Wednesday, April 25 , 2018, 2:53 am | Fog/Mist 52º


Marijuana-Related Highway Fatalities Projected to Jump 300% if Prop. 19 Passes, Study Says

Group opposing marijuana legalization ties increased marijuana use to crash deaths

A recent study by Al Crancer Jr., a retired research analyst for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, has concluded that the passage of Proposition 19 — the Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Initiative on the November ballot — could create a dramatic increase in traffic fatalities on California roads and highways.

“California voters need to receive accurate and truthful information on this voter initiative, beginning with an accounting of the purported tax benefit,” Rebecca Hernandez of the California-based Safety Wellness Advocacy Community Coalition said in a statement. “Data from the NHTSA’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration show a disturbing trend in states that have medical marijuana laws. There is a clear increase in vehicle crash fatalities resulting from marijuana use.”

Pot proponents are fond of arguing that alcohol is worse than marijuana.

“Pro-marijuana factions fail to mention key pieces of data in their arguments,” said CALM co-chairwoman Carla Lowe. “There is no standard test for DUI with marijuana. We just don‟t have one.”

DUI tests for alcohol have been established for decades, but nothing similar exists for marijuana, which requires drawing blood to establish that marijuana is in the system at a high-enough level to cause impairment.

“With the advent of ‘medical’ marijuana, we have seen an almost 100 percent increase in marijuana-related traffic fatalities,” Lowe said. “A recent example occurred in Chico, where an elementary school teacher was hit and killed by a motorist who police suspect was stoned. He was a local ‘medical’ pot grower.

“If Prop. 19 passes, Crancer estimates that the number of marijuana-related highway fatalities will triple from the present level. This is a most sobering thought for every voter to consider.”

The nation is watching as California reaches this crucial turning point when voters could allow sober motorists to face a significant increase in stoned drivers.

“The legalization of marijuana under the guise of ‘medicine’ has had a serious impact on public safety,” said Calvina Fay, executive director of Florida-based Save Our Society From Drugs. “The increase in drugged driving and vehicular fatalities is extremely alarming. If Prop. 19 is passed, which will legalize marijuana for all purposes, this problem will grow to epidemic proportions!”

— Scott Chipman represents Citizens Against Legalizing Marijuana.

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