Public Health and Safety

Legal Cannabis Sales and Car Crashes: Injury and Fatal Crash Rates Increase

The legalization and sale of marijuana for adult use is linked to increased risks of both injury and fatal car crashes. These were the finding of researchers seeking to gain insight into marijuana’s legalization and its impacts on traffic safety, released in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs (Vol. 83, Issue 4) in July 2022. According to researchers (Farmer, C. the combined effect of legalization and retail sales increased injury crash rates by 5.8 percent. For fatal crash rate there was a 4.1 percent increase. 

This study provides excellent overview of historic research conducted into highway safety, alcohol / drug impairment and traffic risks previous to this report. Because legalized marijuana sales in the commercial adult use markets and data on associated consequences are still emerging, the researches cite the ongoing need to monitor data and trends to gain a better understanding of this issue.    

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