We are pleased to report that Illinois’ Governor Rauner exercised a line item veto that we requested of HB 218 that would have established a 15 ng/ml per se level for THC, effectively preventing enforcement of DUI-marijuana in Illinois. (See previous post “Governor Rauner, please consider the consequences.”) Unfortunately, he recommended that legislators support a 5 ng/ml level as is used in Colorado, Washington and Montana. A 5 ng/ml standard is still far too high. … READ MORE
A February 2015 report from NHTSA’s 2013-2014 survey shows a continued decline in the percentage of drivers under the influence of alcohol. In 1996, 16.9% of those surveyed had a Breath Alcohol Concentration (BrAC) greater than .05 gm/210 L, compared with a mere 8.3% in 2013-2014. One might believe from these statistics that we’re making great progress in reducing the incidence and impact of drunk driving. Wow! We cut the percentage of alcohol-impaired drivers … READ MORE
THC (delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol) is known to be the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana that causes driving impairment. For years, legislators and some scientists have sought a per se level of THC in a driver’s blood that is equivalent to alcohol per se levels, .08 BAC in the United States and .05 BAC in most other countries.
The fact is that there is no level of THC in blood above which everyone is impaired, and below … READ MORE
The following was delivered to Illinois Governor Rauner’s office Tuesday, May 26, 2015:
We ask you to exercise your line item veto authority when signing HB 218, Cannabis Penalties. This bill, drafted to decriminalize marijuana, also eliminates Illinois’ ability to successfully prosecute drivers under the influence of marijuana by creating the nation’s first 15 ng/ml Δ9 THC per se law. We ask that you strike the per se provision when signing the bill into law.… READ MORE
Illinois is considering HB 218, a measure that would decriminalize marijuana. While this may be a laudable goal, HB 218 achieves its objective by throwing victims of stoned driving under the bus. Illinois currently is blessed with one of the strongest DUI-D laws in the nation, based on a defensible zero tolerance policy. HB 218 would remove THC’s zero tolerance policy and replace it with a per se standard of 15 ng/ml in blood for … READ MORE
Congress provides both incentives and threats to States to encourage them to improve highway safety. Incentives come in the form of grants to States that successfully adopt practices to reduce impaired driving either by being on the influence of alcohol or through tiredness, something that truck drivers experience all too often. This is why many fleet managers make the decision to look at a dot compliance software to help manage and control each individual driver. … READ MORE
Colorado has a single statute number for DUI, regardless of cause: alcohol, drugs, or a combination of alcohol and drugs. Because of that, the State Judicial Branch has no way of telling how many of Colorado’s approximately 25,000 annual DUIs are actually DUIDs.
Many law enforcement officers are able to distinguish between DUIs and DUIDs, and they are getting better at it all the time. The Colorado State Patrol, Larimer County, the cities of Denver … READ MORE
Let us provide a rational answer to a nonsensical question. It is a nonsensical question because blood is never impaired by THC. Never. Alcohol doesn’t impair blood either. These drugs only impair the brain, not the blood.
We can only test for drug content in the brain by means of an autopsy, something most drivers would reasonably object to.
We test blood as a surrogate for what’s in the brain. For alcohol, blood is a … READ MORE
The pot lobby is at it again. December 2014, Paul Armentano, NORML’s Deputy Director issued a press release entitled, “Evidence Fails to Support Proposed DUI Impairment Levels for Cannabis.” This in and of itself is nothing new. Researchers have known for years that blood levels of THC bear only a slight relationship to impairment levels (see Dec 12 blog “What level of THC in blood causes driving impairment?”) More to the point, it has long … READ MORE
DUID Victim Voices has lobbied extensively for better DUID data so state legislators can make laws based on intelligence, rather than myth. See January 16, 2014 Blog for one letter that was part of this lobbying campaign. This letter was spread widely throughout the law enforcement community. Governor Hickenlooper responded with a polite thank you note.
February 2014, DUID Victim Voices sponsored a special program at Colorado’s Interagency Task Force on Drunk Driving. The program … READ MORE