A person who drives while under the influence of marijuana might cause an accident that has devastating consequences. If you became involved in a collision with another motorist who used marijuana before getting behind the wheel, emergency personnel may have taken you to the hospital with a concussion, broken bones, whiplash, cuts, and other severe injuries.
You may have undergone one or more surgeries. You may need to see a chiropractor or physical therapist multiple times a week for the next several months to regain your strength and mobility and return to some semblance of the life you had before the accident.
The collision could continue to affect you, even if you receive excellent care. You may be unable to perform some routine household tasks that used to be easy. If you had a physically demanding job prior to the accident, your injuries might have left you unable to perform your responsibilities. You could return to work in a limited capacity, or you may be completely unable to perform your old job, forcing you to find another way to earn a living.
The chronic pain, sleepless nights, and financial stress may have affected your relationship with your spouse. Your children may not fully understand what has happened, but they know that you are in pain and worried, leaving them feeling anxious and confused.
A car accidents caused by marijuana use lawyer could help you seek compensation to cover the costs for the medical care you have already received, plus future care, lost income, repair bills, and pain and suffering. Contact Ben Crump Law, PLLC, today at 800-959-1444 for a free case review with a team member.
How Marijuana Affects the Ability to Drive
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is a psychoactive compound found in marijuana. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), THC can affect an individual’s coordination, reaction time, and judgment of distance—all necessary factors to operate a vehicle safely.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse reported on several studies that showed drivers with THC in their system were twice as likely to cause a deadly crash than sober drivers. Despite the danger, many people believe that driving while “high” is safe and get behind the wheel after using marijuana.
Often, tests show that drivers who caused accidents were under the influence of marijuana, alcohol, or other intoxicants. Impaired motorists can make errors in judgment that seriously injure or kill other people on the road. Mixing multiple substances can increase the risk of getting into an accident.
The Difficulty of Determining Role Marijuana Played in a Crash
When a person uses marijuana, active THC leaves the body within hours, but inactive THC can linger for days. Active THC can cause impairment in a driver, but inactive THC cannot. There currently is no roadside test to check the level of active THC in a person’s system.
Police officers can conduct roadside tests at an accident scene to check a driver’s balance and coordination. The officer can give a person who fails such a test and appears impaired another test to check blood alcohol content.
Officers might also administer a test at the police station to check a driver’s THC level, but a significant amount of THC may have left the person’s body by that time. That can make it challenging to figure out if marijuana impaired the driver when the collision occurred.
In addition, marijuana, like other drugs, affects people in different ways based on individual characteristics. For example, a person’s previous marijuana usage and metabolism can affect that individual’s level and duration of the impairment. An amount of active THC that would impair one person may have little or no effect on someone else. The potency of a marijuana strain and whether the individual smoked or ingested it can also influence how it affects the user.
Laws on Driving under the Influence of Marijuana
Although numerous states have legalized medical or recreational marijuana use, driving while under the influence of marijuana remains against the law. Each state sets its policies on marijuana-impaired driving and testing. Difficulties in accurately measuring THC levels have hindered enforcement of impaired driving laws when it comes to marijuana.
A car accidents caused by marijuana use lawyer can help you pursue justice and compensation if you suffered injuries in a collision caused by a driver with THC in their system. Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC, today for a free case review with a team member.
How a Car Accidents Caused by Marijuana Use Lawyer May Be Able to Assist You
Ben Crump Law, PLLC, has helped people all over the United States hurt by the actions or negligence of others pursue justice and compensation by filing insurance claims and personal injury lawsuits on their behalf.
We can start by reviewing the accident report to see if a police officer noted unusual behavior that would indicate the other driver’s impairment. If a search found marijuana in the other person’s car after the crash, or a police officer reported the smell of marijuana, that might help us demonstrate that the driver operated the vehicle while impaired. If, when questioned by a police officer, the other motorist admitted to using marijuana shortly before the crash, that may also be substantial evidence to demonstrate that the driver was at fault for the accident.
Our team can negotiate a settlement without going to court, but we can take your case to trial if necessary.
You might receive a financial award even if your actions partially contributed to the crash. State comparative negligence laws often allow victims of personal injuries to obtain compensation when they share some liability for an accident.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
If you think that you could not afford to hire a car accidents caused by marijuana use lawyer, do not let that worry stop you. Ben Crump Law, PLLC, works on contingency, meaning that we finance upfront costs and only collect a fee if we obtain compensation on behalf of a client.
You have a limited amount of time to pursue justice and compensation. Each state has a statute of limitations, limiting the window of opportunity for victims of personal injuries to file a lawsuit. If you miss your state’s deadline, you might be unable to seek compensation. Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC, today at 800-959-1444 to discuss your case with a staff member.