Officials are cautioning that California won’t be free of marijuana regulations when it becomes legal for recreational use on January 1, 2018. As part of a campaign launched days before California officially becomes the sixth state to fully legalize weed, messages such as “Drive high, get a DUI” have began showing up on Amber Alert display signs along freeways statewide. Once marijuana becomes more commonplace in California, law enforcement will face new obstacles in regulating offenses such as driving under the influence of marijuana. There is no universal method for the detecting marijuana impairment and, unlike alcohol, there is no legal limit for the amount of marijuana that can be in a driver’s system.
Currently, people can get a ticket for having an open container of marijuana in the car (anything from a vape pen to a blunt) or consuming pot while driving. According to a California Office of Traffic Safety news release, authorities have seen a drastic increase in the amount of drivers involved in fatal crashed with substances found in their system. The agency’s director, Rhonda Craft, stated, “It has taken more than 40 years to convince the vast majority of the public that driving under the influence of alcohol is dangerous, illegal and socially unacceptable,” the agency’s director, Rhonda Craft, said in a statement.”
Frank T. Luciano has almost 40 years of experience in defending drug and DWI/DUI cases in Hackensack and elsewhere. He is also a lifetime member of the legal committee of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.