Up to 14 Percent of cannabis users driving high according to Stats Canada

It also discovered that drug-impaired driving episodes more than doubled between 2009 and 2017 but the report was careful to note that doesn’t necessarily mean two times as many individuals are driving under the influence as detection methods have only gotten better and authorities may be checking drivers more frequently with legalization only months away.

Let’s have a look at some of the most interesting findings and the difference between men’s and women’s cannabis preferences while also adding some important context to the numbers and how they compare to drunk driving.

Where does the driving data come from?

Stats Canada explained that while it usually relied on police reports to monitor incidents of cannabis-impaired driving, it acknowledged that authorities don’t catch every drug-impaired driver and thus it comprised supplementary survey questions for Canadians to self-report their cannabis and driving habits to try to get the bigger picture.

The numbers seem high but some context is required

It’s important to take the numbers with a grain of salt, particularly for the self-reported drivers who smoked cannabis within two hours of getting behind the wheel because there’s no information on how much or little they have before driving.

Imagine if they only had a toke or two? Or should theyrsquo;d done a dab? Obviously, how much cannabis they have would play a major part in how impaired (or not) they had been, so we can’t jump to conclusions and assume they had been impaired.

The fact that the survey asked respondents if they had swallowed cannabis within 2 hours of driving is also very important because of the new rules coming in with Bill C-46, because, as the Globe and Mail said,

“Everything you’ll be charged with depends on the number of nanograms of THC you have per millilitre of blood within two hours of driving. ”

Also, keep in mind a study from 2016 found 1 in 4 Canadians admitting to driving drunk, and compared to this, the 14 percent of cannabis users who drove doesn’t look as bad- particularly when considering the cannabis users only said they’d consumed within that 2 hour window, which does not automatically mean they were impaired.

And though the science is still out on how long you’d need to wait after smoking to get beneath the 5 nanogram of THC per mL of blood limit, we know that for alcohol, there’s a renowned guideline that says you should wait between 1-2 hours then drink before driving.

But what do you think- should drivers need to wait 1-2 hours after smoking before getting back into the cars?

Generally, men are more inclined to take risks than women, and it was no different here. Men were almost 2X more likely to have driven within 2 hours of using cannabis than women.

It was also found that women and men have different preferences when it comes to their method of consumption.

According to the report:

“Analysis by gender shows that higher percentages of males reported using dried flower/leaf than did females, while the reverse was true for edibles. ”

Men preferred dried flower 9 percent more than the fairer sex (90 percent of men compared to 81 percent of women), while women reported using edibles more than men at 41% compared to men’s 25%.

While the national average was about 14 percent for drivers who admitted to consuming cannabis within two hours of driving, in BC, only 8% said that they ’d done so.

You might have expected that the house of BC Bud would be a lot higher, but maybe theyrsquo;re more inclined to have a walk or ride their bikes or maybe just chill on the sofa.

27% of daily or near-daily cannabis users said that they ’d driven within two hours of consuming.

Featured picture courtesy of IB Times UK.

Sources

Released at Sat, 11 Aug 2018 18:47:06 +0000

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