A new study released by the University of Michigan Addiction Center reports some troubling news about the state’s medical cannabis users. One in five participants said they had driven a car “very high” within the last half-year.
“There is a low perceived risk about driving after using marijuana, but we want people to know that they should ideally wait several hours to operate a vehicle after using cannabis, regardless of whether it is for medical use or not,” said Erin E. Bonar, the report’s lead author, assistant professor of psychiatry, and clinical psychologist. “The safest strategy is to not drive at all on the day you used marijuana.”
But that is decidedly not the strategy being practiced by the study’s participants. Over 50 percent of respondents — all of whom take cannabis for chronic pain issues — said they have driven high within two hours of consuming cannabis.
The study is particularly significant given the sheer number of cannabis users in Michigan. California is the only state with more medical marijuana patients in the United States. Overall, Michigan is home to some 270,000 medical cannabis users. Since the study was conducted, voters in the state approved widespread recreational marijuana usage, making