Drugged Driving a Growing Threat in US
Gil Kerlikowske, director of the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy, said that while drunk driving has fallen, drugged driving is a significant problem.
Reuters reports that Kerlikowske is calling for drugged driving to be an official topic at the next U.N. Commission on Narcotic Drugs meeting in 2011, and wants to collect data to examine the severity of the problem.
He said that 16 percent of vehicles on the road on weekend evenings have drivers who are under the influence of drugs, including prescription drugs.
One of the main problems is driving after using marijuana, Kerlikowske said. Drugged driving can negatively affect judgment, reaction time, driving skills, and memory.
Kerlikowske added that the U.S.’s new drug control strategy will focus more on prevention and treatment of drug abuse, while still working to curb drug trafficking.
Source: Reuters, Sylvia Westall, U.S. Says “Drugged Driving” is a Growing Threat, March 9, 2010.