The horrific collision Tuesday night on Interstate 880 in Fremont that claimed three lives is just the latest in a string of deadly wrecks involving a cannabis-impaired driver.
The suspect in this week’s wreck, which tied up the highway until the morning commute, was reportedly driving recklessly and at a high rate of speed on 880 before the crash occured. That driver was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of marijuana and is suspected of causing the collision. The suspect was identified as Dang Nguyen Hai Tran, 21, of San Jose.
Pot-related accidents have been in the news the past few years as nine states and the District of Columbia began to legalize the use of recreational cannabis Those states are: Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont and Washington.
What constitutes a ”marijuana-related” accident is still wrapped up in controversy, as law enforcement in cannabis-friendly states try to get their arms around the problem. For example, in 2016, four years after Colorado became one of the first two states to legalize recreational pot, then Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson said “marijuana-related” traffic deaths, hospital visits and school suspensions in the Rocky Mountain state have “not significantly” increased since the state legalized the drug.
But that claim was immediately debunked by a number of official sources which all showed substantial increases in those problems since pot became legal. The problem was and remains this: the limitations of the data make it impossible to know for sure how many of the documented incidents were directly caused by marijuana use. As ProCon.org reported, “unlike alcohol, for example, testing positive for marijuana doesn’t necessarily mean a person is under the influence of the drug at the time of the traffic accident.”
Still, pot remains front and center in a number of deadly vehicular accidents in states where the laws governing its use have been loosened. Here are some of those stories that made the news:
After Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson told CNN’s Anderson Cooper that “marijuana-related” traffic deaths, hospital visits and school suspensions in Colorado have “not significantly” increased since the state legalized the drug four years earlier, the push-back began immediately, according to a report by FactCheck.org, a project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center.
“That’s inaccurate,” it said. “Statistics from various official sources show substantial increases. But the limitations of the data make it impossible to know for sure how many of …read more
Source:: The Mercury News – Latest News