How do police officers know if a driver is under the influence of marijuana?

Driving under the influence of marijuana can impair a driver’s judgment and interfere with safe driving. In those ways, driving under the influence of marijuana is similar to driving under the influence of alcohol.

However, testing for the two substances is significantly different. Police officers can quickly administer accurate breathalyzer tests to measure the amount of alcohol in a driver’s blood. Currently, there is no similar test that can provide consistently reliable results for marijuana or other drugs, though research continues and tests may become available.

It Is Still Possible to Test for Marijuana Now

If a driver appears impaired and passes a breathalyzer test, then officers who are trained in drug recognition may assess a driver at the accident scene. Police officers with the right training may:

  • Check a driver’s vital health signs including blood pressure, temperature, and pulse
  • Test a driver’s eye-tracking
  • Look at a driver’s pupils

A police officer who has reasonable suspicion that a driver may be under the influence of marijuana may take the driver to the hospital or the police station for a blood draw. Marijuana doesn’t appear in the bloodstream as alcohol does, but a blood draw could provide useful information about the cause of the crash.

What Happens If You’re Hurt in a Crash

If you’ve been hurt in an Illinois accident, then your experienced Illinois accident lawyer will look at all possible causes of your crash. After reviewing the police report and hearing your account of the accident, your lawyer may suggest gathering more information from the other driver under oath. Additionally, your lawyer may suggest getting information from accident witnesses or people who were with the driver in the hours before the crash.

To get the information that you need, please contact Hupy and Abraham today for a free, no-obligation consultation. We would be pleased to meet with you in our Bloomington, Gurnee, or Rockford, Illinois office, or in your home or hospital room. Together, we will get the information that you need to protect your fair accident recovery.

Jason F. Abraham
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Helping car accident and personal injury victims throughout Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa since 1993.