AAA Opposes Recreational Cannabis Legalization in MarylandFebruary 17, 2021
AAA Mid-Atlantic declared opposition Tuesday to legislation that would allow adults to consume recreational cannabis in Maryland. The auto club points to data showing increased accidents, fatalities, and car insurance rates in Western states that have legalized recreational marijuana. Colorado saw the number of road fatalities involving cannabinoid, alone or with other drugs or alcohol, jumped over 150 percent from 2013 to 2017. In Washington state, the fatalities doubled in a more recent study. None of the states mentioned match Maryland’s population density, which is currently fifth in the country.
The study also raised concerns over police training and methods to determine cannabis-caused impairment. There are currently no studies that can correlate “active THC” in the bloodstream to visible signs of worsened driving or field-testing instruments to gauge the level of consumption, like BAC with alcohol. AAA does encourage the Maryland legislature to create a new impairment test for drivers, expand open container laws to include cannabis products and devices, and invest in public messaging to deter driving while using cannabis.
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