Drivers in Texas should know that it’s illegal (in all 50 states, in fact) to drive under the influence of any impairing substance. That includes both legal and illegal substances like alcohol, marijuana and opioids. Below is what the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has to say about drug-impaired driving.
Impairment can occur in different ways. Drivers can find it to concentrate on the road, make prudent decisions and react in time to hazards when under the influence of alcohol or marijuana. They may become aggressive and initiate a road rage incident under the influence of cocaine or crystal meth. If they take certain medications without reading the warning label, they may experience drowsiness or dizziness while driving.
NHTSA found in its 2013-2014 National Roadside Survey that 20% of drivers have drugs in their system. Among nighttime weekend drivers, 12.6% tested positive for marijuana. This marked a 48% increase from the 2007 survey, when 8.6% tested positive.
In 2018, NHTSA began its If You Feel Different, You Drive Different campaign to educate the nation’s drivers on drug-impaired driving. It’s also collaborating with law enforcement officials, drug experts and others to come up with ways to combat drug-impaired driving. It reminds everyone to designate a sober driver when using impairing drugs or when hosting a party where such substances are offered.
Many drivers neglect the warnings, though, and cause motor vehicle accidents. Those injured by such negligence have good reason to file a personal injury claim, and they can do so as long as their own degree of fault does not exceed the other driver’s. They may want a lawyer to evaluate their case in light of the modified comparative fault rule that Texas operates under. If hired, the lawyer may do much more, including handling all settlement negotiations.