Drunk driving down nationally, impaired driving up

Marijuana most prevalent drug in drivers' systems

Drunk driving is down in the US but impaired drivers are still getting behind the wheel.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found drunk driving is down by a third compared to their most recent survey seven years ago.

However, 20-percent of drivers had evidence of enough drugs in their system to impair judgment. Marijuana was the most prevalent drug.

A Doctor at Gundersen Health System says both drugs and alcohol cause a decrease in attentiveness, perception of space, and poor hand eye coordination.

“Unlike alcohol intoxication where the drivers are completely clueless that they are impaired and are willing to take risks that normally they wouldn’t take if they weren’t under the influence, stoned drivers actually are aware of that impairment and try to compensate for it by doing things more slowly,” said Gundersen Health System Internal Medicine Doctor Michael Dolan.

The doctor says one of the biggest problems people driving while high tend to experience is difficulty staying in a lane.

He referenced Green Bay Packer Letroy Guion who was arrested last week in Florida for possession of marijuana and a gun. Guion was initially pulled over for failing to stay in a single lane.