Studies Show Smoking Cannabis Impairs Driving Ability
Based on the results of a two-year randomized trial study conducted by the Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research, cannabis can diminish your ability to drive 4.5 hours after consumption.
To get the results, researchers gave the participants a placebo cigarette and a cannabis cigarette containing 5.9%–13.4% of THC. Twenty-five minutes after the test that simulated actual car driving, the group that smoked cannabis witnessed a considerable decline in CDS (Composite Drive Scores).
The largest gap between the driving scores of the two groups was noted after 30 minutes, as well as 1 hour and 30 minutes after consumption. What’s more, borderline differences were also reported after 3 hours 30 minutes, while there were no noticeable differences after 4 hours and 30 minutes.
Additionally, while most participants were not ready to take the driving test immediately after smoking cannabis, more than half (69%) were willing to “drive” after 1 hour and 30 minutes post smoking.
In essence, researchers believe cannabis provides a false sense of security, given that the first few hours are so critical and that drivers are unable to ascertain their driving capabilities while under the influence.
The study also shows that, although the bad boy THC did decrease participants’ driving capabilities due to its psychoactive effects, it was NOT linked to its concentration in the blood, cigarette content, or history of use.
In other words, smoking cannabis will impair your driving ability, but not the same way as alcohol.
Nevertheless, seeing how marijuana affects people differently, more research is needed to get to the bottom of this.