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White House and MADD join forces against drugged driving
October 13th, 2011
01:21 PM ET

White House and MADD join forces against drugged driving

In an effort to combat an increase in the number of teenage drugged driving cases, White House announced Thursday that it will partner with Mothers Against Drunk Driving to create a new information campaign, calling on parents to become more aware of this dangerous trend.

Gil Kerlikowske, director of National Drug Control Policy,  along with Jan Withers, national president of MADD announced the partnership to raise public awareness regarding the consequences of drugged driving. MADD already has launched a nationwide campaign against poly-abuse (both alcohol and drugs) and drugged driving, and is pushing for law enforcement officers to strongly enforce laws against drugged driving. Along with these efforts, the drug control policy office  is releasing new materials for parents and teens aimed at educating young drivers and their families about  the dangers of driving while under the influence of drugs.

“Research shows that drugs have adverse effects on judgment, reaction time, and motor skills – all vital requirements for responsible driving,” said Kerlikowske. “I can think of no greater organization with which to partner to save lives on our roadways than MADD. For decades, MADD has been a linchpin in our nation’s efforts to make our roadways safer and I am proud to join them to help raise public awareness regarding the devastating consequences of drugged driving.”

According to the drug policy office's new analysis of 2009 data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration,  roughly one in four (23%) of fatally injured drivers who tested positive for drugs were under the age of 25. Additional data, based on information from 2005 to 2009, finds that almost half (42%) of fatally injured drivers who tested positive for marijuana were under the age of 25.

This data supports NHTSA data on fatal motor vehicle crashes that showed that one in three motor vehicle driver fatalities (33%) with known drug test results tested positive for drugs in 2009. Their research also showed that when drugs were involved, the number of fatal crashes had increased by 5 percentage points over the past five years, even as the overall number of drivers killed in motor vehicle crashes in the United States had declined.

According to the drug policy office, one of the handiest resources it is now providing is the Drugged Driving Toolkit. The toolkit provides tips for parents of teen drivers, sample community activities to raise public awareness regarding drugged driving, and tips to help teens reject negative influences to ensure they remain “Above the Influence.” The toolkit is available for download at www.TheAntiDrug.com.

“We already know the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol, and a growing body of research indicates that drugged driving is also a concern—especially for young drivers aged 15-20 who are at particularly high risk for traffic crashes and really need to remain fully alert and focused on driving,” said David Strickland, administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.


soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. Falero

    Hopefully they look at all the "over aged driving while Intoxicated with prescibed medication" next. I see way too many old people behind the wheel causing other motorists to have to drive even more defensive. I have nothing against old people, as I hope I get to experience that part of life, but they(90%) clearly need some sort of assisted transportation. I would rather be behind a vehicle driven by a stoner than an 80 year old on 15 different medications!!!!

    October 13, 2011 at 14:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • cody plant

      of course they pick on teenagers even though more then half the accidents related to drunk driving and drugged driving of adults. they just dont mention that cause whenever theres an accident where a drunk or drugged adult crashes into the teenager the teenager is blamed cause the adult cops r jealous of our youth aults r jealous of our youth not all adults just most

      October 14, 2011 at 09:05 | Report abuse |
    • Malcolm Kyle

      On 29-Nov-2011, a study was published by University of Colorado Denver Professor Daniel Rees and Montana State University Assistant Professor D. Mark Anderson showing states that have legalized medical marijuana experience fewer fatal car crashes compared to states that have not. The researchers suggest that there may be fewer fatal drunk driving accidents in those jurisdictions because more people may be choosing to smoke marijuana instead of making the more dangerous choice of consuming alcohol – both traffic fatalities and alcohol consumption declined.

      The rate of fatal crashes in which a driver had consumed any alcohol dropped 12% after medical marijuana was legalized, and crashes involving high levels of alcohol consumption fell 14%. The study thoroughly accounted for other contributing factors regarding this decrease, such as changes in the number of miles traveled each year and new traffic laws.

      "Our research suggests that the legalization of medical marijuana reduces traffic fatalities through reducing alcohol consumption by young adults," – Daniel Rees, professor of economics at the University of Colorado Denver who co-authored the study with D. Mark Anderson, assistant professor of economics at Montana State University.

      So, the prohibitionist scare-tactic of claiming there would be an increase in traffic fatalities if marijuana were to be legally regulated for all adults should now be banished to the fantasy realm from whence it came.

      http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-11/uocd-ssm112911.php

      March 19, 2012 at 13:40 | Report abuse |
  2. strayan

    Public servants seem to have a habit of exaggerating or plain fabricating problems to justify their pay cheques. The current preoccupation with 'drugged driving' seems to be another example of this.

    Meanwhile, what 'drugs' is the drug czar talking about? I bet if you tested fatally injured drivers for caffeine, 90% of them would test positive. Drawing a conclusion about the causal role of caffeine in car accidents from this kind of incomplete data would be stupid. There are too many variables that can compromise road safety including speed, age, distraction (from mobile phones etc), fatigue, vehicle maintenance, visibility and weather conditions. Don't let these things get in the way of a good scare campaign though.

    October 13, 2011 at 22:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • cody plant

      dont say that next thing caffeen will have a age limit where u have to be 21 stfu please we dont need that no disrespect intended

      October 14, 2011 at 09:07 | Report abuse |
    • Malcolm Kyle

      * A 2002 review of seven separate studies involving 7,934 drivers reported, "Crash culpability studies have failed to demonstrate that drivers with cannabinoids in the blood are significantly more likely than drug-free drivers to be culpable in road crashes."
      REFERENCE: G. Chesher and M. Longo. 2002. Cannabis and alcohol in motor vehicle accidents.

      * A driver with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.10 or greater is seven times more likely to be involved in a fatal motor vehicle crash than is a driver who has not consumed alcoholic beverages, and a driver with an alcohol concentration of 0.15 or greater is about 25 times more likely.

      * In a 60 km/h zone the risk of involvement in a vehicle accident with casualties increases exponentially (doubles) with each 5 km/h increase in traveling speed.
      http://www.infrastructure.gov.au/roads/safety/publications/1997/pdf/Speed_Risk_1.pdf

      * Talking on a Cell phone while driving Increases accident risk by a factor of 4.

      * Texting while driving Increases accident risk by a factor of 23.

      * Eating and drinking is a factor in more accidents than DUI, cell phone use or texting while driving.
      http://www.montlick.com/accident-blog/754-studies-show-eating-a-drinking-while-driving-may-be-a-greater-distraction-than-cell-phones

      * The smokers of cigarettes – even if they do not smoke while driving – have an increased accident risk of 1.5

      * Smoking cigarettes while driving Increases accident risk by a factor of 2.
      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2331646

      * Alcohol-related accidents are so prevalent, an estimated 40 percent of all persons in the United States will be involved in a traffic mishap blamed on alcohol at some point in their lives.
      http://alcoholism.about.com/cs/drive/a/aa070297.htm

      *** It is important to note that once marijuana is 'Legalized and Regulated' it will still be an offense to drive while impaired – DUI laws already apply to marijuana just like they do alcohol. The fact that being under the influence of a substance makes you a worse driver should have no bearing on its legality in general – otherwise we would be forced to hand the market in alcohol back to machine-gun tooting bootleggers.

      March 19, 2012 at 13:42 | Report abuse |
  3. Wastrel

    Yeah, yeah. To save lives. This is the mantra of the hack politician. Everybody dies. Who's to say whether lives are worth 'saving' at all, or by getting the government involved (by the way, the government seems to have no qualms about killing people in wars or by execution). The goal of this is to limit your freedoms and raise your taxes and make you think it's for your own good, and get a politician re-elected.

    October 14, 2011 at 10:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Barney

      You are 100% correct, Laws do not save lives they only extend them. Maybe 6 months a year more! one way or another we all die! Stop the stupid laws and leave the freedoms alone!

      October 14, 2011 at 13:24 | Report abuse |
  4. jway

    Prohibit alcohol! ..because the marijuana prohibition has been so successful. [/sarcasm]

    October 14, 2011 at 13:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. factsonly

    What about the fact that marijuana is detectable in via drug test for 4 – 6 weeks after use? Unlike alocohol you can test positive for THC and not be under the influence of the substance. More anit-drug scare tactics for weak minded masses.

    October 14, 2011 at 16:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. keef

    they should make 'sleepy' driving illegal too........studies show that driving with less than 5 hours of sleep is the same as driving under the influence.

    October 14, 2011 at 18:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Flufferz

    What about texting while driving?

    October 14, 2011 at 21:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Mozberg

    Hey even US medical marijuana patients are AGAINST DRUGGED DRIVING.. check out the site.. http://weeddeservebetter.com/

    October 14, 2011 at 21:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. sam

    When Alcohol use alone costs a Nation $280 Billion a year i thinks its about time they not only tax it like smoking but PUT A Ban on the Sale and consumption of it anywhere Children are Present,anyone who thinks that Smoking Harms others needs to go back to school,secondly not only children are put in harms way but every human beings are also.Drugs are the same as ALCOHOL after all it is a DRUG that is CONDONED,Advertised on Billboards,TV,Radio,In Magazines It is SERVED AT theme parks,sports events,restaurants,It is consumed in colleges,on beaches,and In SO CALLED PUBLIC PLACES,And SOME MOVIE THEATHERS.SO GET going and SLAM ALCOHOL BIG TIME It IS THE BIGGEST KILLER IN THE WORLD.

    October 15, 2011 at 05:35 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Steve

      You write good Sam,REAL good.

      October 15, 2011 at 06:55 | Report abuse |
  10. sam

    Any QUESTIONS ?

    October 15, 2011 at 05:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Sam

    Okay I'll admit it I totally and completely biased against this group (MADD) because it was their first alliance with the gov't that resulted in 18-20 year olds being treated as second-class adults. The 21 legal drinking age is a policy that ALL states adopted because the federal gov't threatened to rescind highway funding for any state that didn't up their drinking age & it was MADD that was behind it. Since then rights afforded to all adults gradually been bumped to a 21 age level (getting a credit card, gambling at a casino, heck walking into a casino). The only reason we retain our right to vote is because of an amendment and the only reason we have that in the first place is because they needed our 18-20 year bodies to fight in wars. I have no problem saying that I am AGAINST MADD because they support age discrimination.

    October 15, 2011 at 10:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. erich2112x

    What about just plain crappy drivers?

    October 15, 2011 at 11:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Anon

    I'm a member of DAMM – Drunks Against Mad Mothers.

    October 15, 2011 at 11:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Chino

    How about fat ass, lazy Americans get out of their cars and walk or bike or etc for transportation? That might reduce the number of drunk, drugged, sleepy and texting while driving incidences :/

    October 15, 2011 at 12:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Jastupid

    DUI's generate too much profit for our government to do anything about ANYONE driving ubder the influence of alcohol or drugs. Sad, but true. Where do you think the average $1,500 fine goes? Our politicians pockets and the revenue of each individual state. I WISH we were more like most countries in europe – if you are caught driving under the influence, you not only lose your license, you ALSO lose your vehicle. You can't kill anyone walking drunk.

    October 15, 2011 at 18:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. MR HEALTHCARE

    WHITES AREN’T WELCOME IN AMERICA ANY LONGER !!! WE DON’T NEED YOU ANYMORE !!! OUT OF AMERICA WITH WHITES NOW !!!


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    911 WAS CREATED FOR PEOPLE TO WAKE UP(deliberately by CIA)....HOWEVER, WAKE UP EITHER WHAT IS TRUTH(sanity) OR WAKE UP TO LIES(insanity = with what your self elected governments have brainwashed you when forcefully jobless/persecuted....therefor­­e, I want you to think about "WAKE UP" when watching next time ALEX JONES alike "alternative" news/media = CIA)

    WHEN YOU WAKE UP, I WANT YOU TO WAKE TO YOURSELF AND NOT TO SOMEONE ELSE'S DREAM (ZIONIST/COMMUNIST/LIBERAL DREAM CATCHERS/THIEFS, WHO PLOTTED 911 TO WAKE YOU AFTERWARDS WITH ECONOMIC OPPRESSION IN A WORLD OF LIES !!!)

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    October 15, 2011 at 18:56 | Report abuse | Reply
    • MagnumPIE

      You sir are a moronic lunatic.

      October 17, 2011 at 01:02 | Report abuse |
  17. Jastupid

    Why not make eating while driving against the law? Or, looking over your shoulder to yell at your three kids in the back seat against the law? Or, putting on make-up? Whatever happened to common sense and keeping two hands on the wheel and both eyes on the road? Stupid is as stupid does.

    October 15, 2011 at 18:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Bobby

    The USA has a drug problem, in which Alcohol is a large part of it.. DUI is just one part of the alcohol problem, it is the tip of the iceberg.. Drugs and alcohol will always be a problem as long as people keep making money off the the problems of others. I believe a good first step would be to teach kids effective stress management techniques such as meditation. When people feel powerless they resort to D&A to escape their hopelessness. I would also get all those dam prescription drugs, and alcohol commercials off the TV... Stp galmourizing celebs who relapse..

    October 16, 2011 at 20:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Lauren

    This program against drunk driving is a very good thing. Truthfully, drinking messes with judgement, and putting someone behind the wheel of a vehicle while drunk, is very bad mistake. People could be seriously harmed with this stupid mistake. This program, MADD (mothers against drunk driving) is a program that sends out a good message. Keeping people aware that drunk driving is bad, is the start to making sure that accidents caused by drunk driving will begin to decrease. Clearly, The white house teaming up with MADD is a good thing.

    October 20, 2011 at 22:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Jake

    Do not go to the theantidrug.com. It is full of half-truths and lies. The very first thing it says in its marijuana section of the site is a half-truth. If you want the truth about drugged driving (at least for marijuana), visit this webpage.

    http://norml.org/library/item/cannabis-and-driving-a-scientific-and-rational-review?category_id=617

    Hopefully this will eradicate some of the ignorance from this country.

    October 24, 2011 at 22:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Terry

    So when do we outlaw the koolaid that these spinsters have been drinking? Jonestown, Waco remind me of the selfserving money grabbers that have invaded our society. If this really had anything to do with saving lives then they would be going after all the cases of the horrific accidents they try to make you believe they are concerned about. General motors proudly builds and promotes the fastest cars in north america but not one word from MADD because they are a sponsor and the people on cel phones texting right through red lights well they gave MADD FREE cel phones. It just goes on and on and nobody seems to give a DAMM that these vengeful idiots are using totally unproven technology to incarcerate thousands of law abiding citizens with products that the MFG'S admit have issues because they are all making buckets full of money off of this . Kind of funny in a way cause where I live the bars are now almost empty and the restaurants are hurting huge. People have now decided to not go out at all and stay home. But soon this will be a large problem for MADD and with nothing for them to attack and make money from they will have to pick up new causes to go after, What's next MADD Seizing children from families if they drink at home or maybe their grandparents. You are going to have to make up a lot of new stories to keep the funds coming in . And if you can't then what can you do ? Just file for bankruptcy and take those large payouts that we have heard about. When that happens the rats that you call volunteers will be eating you alive and the rest will wonder how all of this could have gone on right under their noses. I read that one such head of MADD Canada has already been slaped for questioning your accounting practises. Your time is coming and its sooner then you think.

    November 3, 2011 at 17:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Matt

      Amen Terry, MADD has been manipulating the truth for decades. Destroying one million lives a year, leading to the incarceration of people who were unlikely to have hurt anyone. 99% of people that drink and drive never injure anyone. Even if drunk drivers caused Ten Thousand deaths a year that is still .0003% of the entire United States population. MADD is nothing more than a Corporation full of vengeful lunatics with tunnel vision who profit from the suffering of others.

      February 26, 2012 at 02:05 | Report abuse |

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