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Driving under the influence of drugs a growing problem

On Behalf of | Apr 10, 2017 | Drunk Driving (DUI)

Virginia residents might be at a greater risk of being involved in an accident with a driver who is under the influence of drugs than in the past. According to some reports from law enforcement and safety organizations, drugged driving is a growing threat. In 2011, a study found that college students were roughly equally likely to drive while under the influence of drugs as alcohol.

Drugged driving is also a cause for concern because traffic fatalities are on the rise. During the first nine months of 2015, these fatalities went up more than 9 percent compared to the same period in the previous year. Furthermore, in a 2014 survey, 10 million people said they had driven while under the influence of illicit drugs.

Some areas of the country are seeing a significant increase in drug overdoses from heroin and opioids. This may be contributing to the problem of drugged driving. Some people are overdosing while behind the wheel. One reason for this is that heroin addicts need drugs at regular intervals to avoid withdrawals, and this might result in themusing the drugs when they are in a vehicle.

Even if motorists don’t cause an accident because of drugged or drunk driving, they might still be stopped by police and charged. A DUI can have significant repercussions for a person’s career and personal life in addition to the legal problems. Those who have been charged might want to consult an attorney about their defense. Penalties can be serious even for first-time offenders, and if motorists ahve previous DUI convictions on their record, they could be even more severe. However, an attorney might argue that the breath test was not conducted correctly or raise questions about the police officer’s account of the driver’s behavior.