Across the country, more and more states are legalizing marijuana every year in response to our changing attitude toward the drug. While the recreational use of marijuana remains illegal in Georgia, it’s important to remember that marijuana, just like alcohol, can cause impairment when someone gets behind the wheel. Driving while high can lead to serious car accidents that can result in severe injuries to innocent people.
Georgia DUI Laws
Like every other state, it is illegal in Georgia to drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. For alcohol, anyone who has a blood alcohol content (BAC) of more than .08 may be charged with DUI. Because there is currently no way to measure the content of marijuana in the blood, any presence of any amount of marijuana in the blood is sufficient to charge someone with DUI.
Effects of Marijuana on Drivers
Many people mistakenly think that marijuana does not affect their ability to drive. The CDC, however, reports that marijuana negatively affects driving abilities in the following ways:
- Slows reaction time
- Impairs decision-making and problem-solving abilities
- Distorted perception
- Loss of coordination
- Short-term memory loss
These are all skills that are necessary for safe driving. If someone is under the influence of marijuana, the deterioration of these skills could easily cause an accident.
Driving While High is Negligent Driving
Every driver on the road has a legal obligation to other drivers to drive safely. Knowingly driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a breach of that legal obligation. If someone is high and causes an accident, they may be held liable for any injuries they caused. This includes accidents where they could have simply avoided the accident if they were sober.
You May Have a Case Even if the Other Driver is Being Prosecuted
If you were in an accident caused by someone who was high, the other driver may be charged with DUI. As a result, the other driver is probably facing serious fines, jail time, and suspension of their driver’s license. However, it’s important to understand that it may not help you recover compensation for your injuries. If you have been injured as a result of the accident, you are entitled to compensation for the following:
- Any medical expenses
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
Your claim may be worth thousands of dollars or more depending on the severity of your injuries. In addition, you do not have to wait for the resolution of the DUI case. In fact, the sooner you talk with a lawyer the better. You have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit – this may sound like a lot of time but it can pass more quickly than you think.
Call the Georgia Car Accident Attorneys at Slappey & Sadd if You’ve Been Injured
Don’t let someone else’s poor decisions destroy your future. The Atlanta car accident lawyers at Slappey & Sadd have the experience, knowledge, and skills that you need to get the compensation you deserve. Let us help you put your life back together – call us today at 404-255-6677 or send us an email to schedule a free consultation.