Will the Legalization of Marijuana Increase Traffic Deaths?
As this article shows, the government will be carefully studying the affects of the legalization of marijuana on traffic deaths. This will be a really interesting study moving forward. Statisticians will have to control for a number of factors in any crash, including population growth, speed involved in the accident, safety equipment used or not used, weather, e.g., snow and ice, age, and driving ability based, in part, on prior accidents. One factor that must be accounted for, if any study is going to produce any meaningful results, is the THC levels of the driver. Just incorporating any accident data where any presence of marijuana is found will ignore the critical component–whether the marijuana actually impaired or affected their ability to react. Only when this factor is accounted for will we gain any real insight into the impact of the legalization of marijuana on driver safety/traffic deaths.