According to the Highway Loss Data Institute, car crash claims are on the
rise in three states where recreational marijuana use is legal. Colorado,
Washington, and Oregon rose by 16%, 6.2%, and 4.5% respectively. Eight
states and Washington, DC have legalized the use of recreational marijuana
and, since 2013, insurance industry groups have closely monitored claims
to distinguish any correlation between the legalization of the drug and
the recent rise in accidents.
Despite the rise in motor vehicle accidents in some of these states, however,
the crash claims cannot be directly linked to marijuana usage, though
it does indicate a possible correlation. The problem is that it is difficult
to prove causation. While drunk drivers can be tested for sobriety, no
such tests exist that are specifically designed to test drivers under
the influence of marijuana. With so many unanswered questions about marijuana
use and driving, it seems just as likely that other factors on the road,
such as distracted driving and increased miles driven, are other possible
culprits responsible for the rise in collision rates.
Given that marijuana has been legal in Colorado the longest, some say this
is why the rise in each of the three aforementioned states are so varied.
However, Colorado legalized pot only six months before Washington, but
its 16% rise is more than double Washington’s rate of 6.2%. Oregon,
on the other hand, began selling recreational marijuana over a year after
Washington, but is only separated by a 1.7% difference.
Perhaps more time is necessary to fully understand any possible correlations
between the rise of motor vehicle accidents and the legalization of marijuana.
Washington DC Car Accident Attorneys
At Simeone & Miller, LLP, our personal injury attorneys are here to
provide the legal advocacy you need to fight for the compensation you
deserve during this challenging time. When it comes to getting the most
out of your car accident claim or personal injury lawsuit, working with
an experienced and skilled attorney is crucial. Our legal team will help
you obtain the quality medical care you need, negotiate with the insurance
companies and responsible parties, gather necessary evidence, and eliminate
the aggravation of working toward receiving a fair settlement.
Contact us today at (202) 888-0872 to schedule a free consultation with
a member of our legal team. We proudly serve clients in Washington DC,
Maryland, and Virginia.