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Drugged drivers on the road nearly hits 8 figures, survey finds

Many Ohio motorists know that navigating the state's roadways in a motor vehicle presents enough perils on its own and do not need other drivers to present any extra dangers. Yet, that is exactly what individuals who chose to drive under the influence of drugs do, authorities say. The psychoactive, or mind-altering, effects that are common to many controlled substances that millions of U.S. drivers have purportedly admitted to using are not compatible with safe driving practices.

According to a 2013 survey, approximately 9.9 million people ages 12 and older claimed to operated a vehicle under the influence of drugs at least once. This amounts to approximately 3.8 percent of that vast age demographic nationwide. Certain mind-altering drugs can make driving extremely dangerous, authorities state. These substances can impair the driver's ability to maintain focus, throw off a driver's coordination and equilibrium and slacken a a driver's reaction time, a critical factor to avoiding high-speed crashes.

Illicit street drugs are not the only substance impairing drivers. Many legally obtained prescription drugs come with warnings against driving after use that drivers neglect. The extent of the damage related to drugged driver is unclear, authorities say. Drug tests are not a reliable measure for determining with any certainty the true number of traffic accidents that occur each year on account of controlled substances.

Victims of car accidents caused by an individual who was driving under the influence of drugs may feel a great injustice was done to them as they receive the medical and property-repair bills corresponding to the accident. With the advice and advocacy of a personal injury lawyer, victims may convince a civil court that an injustice did indeed occur and, consequently, receive a substantial compensatory award as a result.

Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse , "DrugFacts: Drugged Driving", January 03, 2015

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