Federal Agency Urges States To Mandate Cannabis-Impaired Driving Warning Labels As National Prohibition

According to a report released on Thursday, federal cannabis prohibition is a barrier to nationalizing consumer education to mitigate public safety risks.

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There is an in-depth overview of the crash risk associated with different drugs, including alcohol use, and cannabis, and the prevalence of their use among drivers.

Marijuana labeling should be mandated to inform cannabis consumers about the dangers of driving after consuming marijuana, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. Several legal states require such cannabis labeling, but others don't.

There is a new safety research report on alcohol, another drug, and multiple drug use among drivers. In the US, alcohol is the most often detected drug in impaired driving incidents, followed by cannabis.

There is no federal requirement for labeling cannabis because it's still illegal.

To develop warning labels that explicitly discourage impaired driving, states need to take lessons from other states and Canada, where marijuana is legal nationwide, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. According to the report, there is a warning label for alcohol in the US. Even tiny effects can be meaningful if a product is widely used.

According to a recent study, all but one of the 31 US states with medical cannabis programs have some labeling requirements.

Marijuana labeling rules in Maryland and Oklahoma are examples of policy discrepancy. In Maryland, medical cannabis products are now required to be labeled with a warning about impaired when driving. In contrast, the state-mandated label only discusses the risks of consumption for pregnant or breastfeeding women in Oklahoma.

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According to the report, an analysis of laws in the 51 states, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico identified 23 places where cannabis sales are legal but not required or adequate. 

12 countries have no driving-related label requirements, four have label requirements for only certain cannabis products, and seven do not explicitly give you a warning against driving after cannabis use.

A recent national survey found that drivers are less likely to perceive driving after cannabis use to be dangerous than they are after alcohol use. When alcohol and many prescription and OTC drugs have warnings about driving, users may believe that cannabis does not impair driving. 

The risks of cannabis-impaired driving are similar to those of alcohol, prescription, and OTC drugs. The District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the 21 states where cannabis use is legal but driving-related cannabis warning labels are not required are recommended by the National Transportation Safety Board. Canada's national warning label for marijuana products could serve as a model for countries that don't have similar rules on the books. The organization created an international symbol for cannabis items that could be used in states.

The board said alcohol and marijuana were the most commonly detected drugs. Cannabis and other potentially impairing drugs contribute to the problem of impaired driving crashes, despite the fact that alcohol remains the drug with the most detrimental impact on traffic safety. Over the past decade, there has been a general movement to decriminalize cannabis use in the state. 

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The research on the reforms has been mixed. Both cannabis legalization advocates and prohibitionists want to prevent impaired driving from happening. 

Despite conflicting studies, reform opponents insist that cannabis legalization leads to increased impaired driving, while supporters maintain that label requirements are a more effective way to deter risky behavior. Public campaigns and drug labeling can be used to raise awareness about the dangers of cannabis and other drug-impaired driving. If drivers are aware of the risks, they may be less likely to use marijuana if they know they have to drive or make plans for alternative transportation. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has promoted a public education platform, and campaigns about the possible dangers of driving while impaired from cannabis, including one that features a confusingly cool-looking cheetah who is depicted being pulled over by a police officer 

The NTSB concluded that media propaganda campaigns have the potential to raise awareness of the risk of impaired driving associated with cannabis, other drugs, and multiple drug use, but it is unclear if they change driver behavior.

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A large-scale survey released last month found that people start using cannabis at a younger age, consume more frequently, and drive a car while under the influence in states that still criminalize the drug.

The status of a federal report into research barriers preventing the development of a standardized test for cannabis impairment on the roads was updated in November.

On the one-year anniversary of President Joe Biden signing a large-scale infrastructure bill, a senator sent a letter to the head of NHTSA. The Department of Transportation is required to complete the report by November 2023. Experts and advocates say there isn't clear evidence of the relationship between THC concentrations in blood and impairment. The study found that people who have not used marijuana were not more likely to be involved in an accident than people who have.

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Studies of the impact of cannabis consumption on a driver's risk of being involved in a car crash have produced conflicting results.

Despite the fact that all study participants exceeded the per se limit for THC in their blood, there was no significant impact on driving ability. The Federal Sentencing Commission has proposed new guidelines for judges that treat past convictions differently.

A bill that advanced in the state Senate this week would increase the monthly purchase limits for medical cannabis patients in North Dakota.
Under some of the strictest restrictions in the country, marijuana can be found in the state.
The state has less than 9000 patients due to a strict list of qualified conditions.
Home cultivation is not legal.
There are monthly limits on the amount of flower or topical products anyone can purchase.

If Senate Bill 2068 is signed into law, it will increase the limit to 6,000 milligrams.
The bill would have raised the limit to 8,000 milligrams per month. The compromise effort with the 6,000-milligram limit cleared the Senate after the Senate committee voted 4-3 not to approve the proposal.

Increasing the monthly allowance will encourage patients to use manufactured products instead of smoking dried leaves.
According to the state Medical Marijuana Director, North Dakota is on the low end of medical marijuana programs. Voters in North Dakota rejected a proposal that would have legalized cannabis adult use.