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Study: Stoned Drivers Are Almost Twice As Likely to Crash as Sober Drivers

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Photo by anna★bee via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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There are more and more studies—and at least one first-hand experience from a local columnist—about how driving under the influence of weed affects drivers.Some of those studies showed mixed results—some actually showed that stoned drivers did a better job, according to the Los Angeles Times. Most of those studies were based on simulated tests, so researchers at the Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia looked at some of the studies that have already been conducted while also digging into actual car crash data, according to an article published in the British Medical Journal.

Its analysis showed that drivers smoking pot are about twice as likely to get into a crash as sober drivers. The authors said this study "could be used as the basis for campaigns against drug impaired driving, developing regional or national policies to control acute drug use while driving, and raising public awareness."

This study isn't exactly earth-shattering—even columnist Steve Lopez noted that his reflexes slowed down when he toked up. Perhaps this offers more evidence that the reason that medical marijuana laws end up making roads safer has nothing to do with how stoners drive—and everything to do with the fact that people at home smoking pot are people not driving home from the bar drunk. (Then again, there are always guys like this.)