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Weed a factor in 1 in 5 weekend fatal car crashes

Alcohol still leads in DUI fatalities, but marijuana trending up

The Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF) says the percentage of fatally-injured drivers testing positive for marijuana is increasing, especially among drivers aged 16-19 and 20-34 (29.8% and 27.2% respectively).

In 2000, almost 35% of fatally injured drivers tested positive for alcohol compared to 12% who tested positive for marijuana. By 2014, the percentage for alcohol dropped 7 points to 28% and marijuana increased 7 points to 19%.

“While the percent is still higher for alcohol, if current trends continue, marijuana might become more prevalent among fatally-injured drivers,” says Dr. Woods-Fry, a research associate with TIRF.

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Time of day and day of the week play a lesser role in predicting the presence of marijuana among fatally injured drivers compared to alcohol. “21% of drivers dying in weekend crashes tested positive for marijuana versus 17% in weekday crashes,” says Robyn Robertson, President & CEO of TIRF. “In comparison, 46% of fatally injured drivers in weekend crashes tested positive for alcohol versus 26% in weekday crashes.”

TIRF and their funding partner State Farm Canada recently launched a new resource, the Drug Impaired Driving Learning Centre (DIDLC), where the public can find the latest facts, research and information about driving drugged.

“With the impending legalization of recreational marijuana,” says John Bordignon, Media Relations spokesperson for State Farm Canada, “a resource like the DIDLC is a valuable tool that can help save lives.”

To learn more about the Drug Impaired Driving Learning Centre (DIDLC), visit: http://druggeddriving.tirf.ca/

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