Driving While High; What DUI / DWI Means with Legal Marijuana in Massachusetts
Boston, MA - The rule for drunk drivers goes as follows: If you refuse to take a breathalyzer, you will automatically have your license suspended for 6 months; should the same go for those under the influence of marijuana? According to the state commission on impaired driving, the same should go. This was stated during a meeting on Friday, December 21, 2018, with many agreeing that those under the influence of marijuana should be facing consequences. A suggestion led officials to start to consider if those under the influence of marijuana choose to refuse a drug test, they may lose their license for 6 months.
After the meeting concluded, the commission reached a final decision. Said decision determined that any person driving a motor vehicle under the influence of marijuana may automatically have their license suspended if they refuse any of the following tests:
- Blood test
- Saliva test
- 12-step evaluation
- Urine test
The members of the commission agreed to much of the proposal, with the end votes closing in at an 8-1, 8 being approval, 1 being denial. All members disagreed, however, on allowing a biological test (blood test) to be involved in the motion, specifically because blood tests only show past drug use, not immediate and current drug use.
The motion was passed amongst the commission members, and it will be sent off to the state lawmakers to deal with the issue next month, as to whether it will become a law.
The motion was brought to the table this past Friday due to the potential rise in stoned drivers across the state. The potential issue was thought about once Massachusetts started allowing several pot shops to open.
Since November 20, 2018, a total of four marijuana shops have opened, with a fifth shop opening yesterday.
Many other states have struggled with a similar dilemma, especially considering the legalities of the situation and the safety of the public has not yet been weighed out to understand what is and what isn’t impaired driving when it comes to pot.
Officials are trying to get a jump start on the issue and they hope nothing bad comes of the legalization of marijuana in Massachusetts.