Drug Testing News BLOG

If the flood of news items about deaths due to driving under the influence does not make an impact, perhaps this new study will.

Data obtained from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System for the duration 1999-2011 revealed that 50.3 percent of car crashes that result in death of young adults and teenagers were caused by driving under the influence of marijuana or alcohol. Dr. Katherine Keyes led the investigative study to use the information as a springboard for drafting policies to combat substance abuse.

The study amassed data involving drivers 16-25 years old who figured in fatal car crashes across nine states: California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Washington State and West Virginia. The study revealed that 36.8 percent of the cases found the victims under the influence of alcohol, 5.9 percent under marijuana, and 7.6 percent under both substances, as published in a news article.

Keyes, who works at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University, said that the information on deadly vehicular accidents should be able to prompt improved implementing rules to curb substance abuse. "Given the rapid changes currently underway in marijuana availability and permissibility in the US, understanding the effects of drug control policies on substance use behaviour and adverse health outcomes, such as fatal motor vehicle crashes, has never been more important," Keyes said.