Featured News 2014 Colorado Starts Marijuana DUI Campaign

Colorado Starts Marijuana DUI Campaign

This month, the very first state to legalize marijuana for recreational use has started to show TV ads that warn users that it is still illegal to drive with marijuana in your system. This ad campaign was created by the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), and in many ways the ads seek to light-heartedly remind drivers that using marijuana behind the wheel is considered impaired driving, but a marijuana DUI is no laughing matter. The campaign is also seeking to raise awareness that officers have training to look for drivers who are impaired by marijuana.

This "Drive High, Get a DUI" campaign includes a TV ad of a man trying to mount a television to the wall, only to have it crash to the floor. The ad flashes the text, "Installing your TV while high is now legal", and then follows up with, "Driving to get a new one isn't." In its press release, CDOT says that its campaign is trying to target the demographic of males between the ages of 21 and 34. It also has campaigns for rental car companies and around dispensaries.

In Colorado, there is a set legal limit for marijuana in one's system, just as there is a legal blood alcohol content level of 0.08 in drivers who are 21 years old or more. The legal limit in this state for marijuana is 5 nanograms of THC per milliliter of blood. This is the point where Colorado law says that a driver can be presumed impaired. There are many who argue, however, that this limit is arbitrary. Concerning this limit, a spokesperson from the Marijuana Policy Project has said, "Too much evidence suggests that it would result in people being unfairly convicted of a DUI when they're actually not impaired."

The type of marijuana used can greatly vary its effects, for one thing. According to a CDOT spokesperson, edible marijuana may not affect someone until a couple of hours have passed after ingestion. Then every person could have a different response to marijuana use.

Fortunately, if someone is arrested for a marijuana DUI in Colorado for having more than 5 nanograms of THC in their blood system, they can still fight the charge that they were driving impaired and come away with a verdict of not guilty. In Washington, however, if a driver is above the legal limit of 5 nanograms of THC, this always means that a court will assume that driver is impaired. A failed test could be all that is needed for a DUI conviction. Arizona law says that any traces of marijuana in a driver's system is enough to be charged with drugged driving, regardless of whether or not the chemicals found are actually known to cause impairment.

Arrested for a marijuana DUI?

State laws diverge a great deal when it comes to your ability to not only use medical marijuana, but then get behind the wheel. Even in states with medical marijuana, drivers may not be legally considered able to drive for as much as weeks after treatment. Marijuana DUI laws are under fire in many states, and potential changes are up in the air as courts review challenges to current law. As it stands, rules regarding DUI cases are already complex enough; marijuana DUI cases are even more difficult. If you have been arrested on a marijuana DUI charge, then you need to work with a local attorney who understands where the ever-changing laws stand in your state, and who knows how to find the legal defense that could get your charges reduced or dismissed. Contact the qualified DUI lawyer you need from our directory today!

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