Toxicology

 

This is the first of six videos produced by the National Center for State Courts and ABA Judicial Outreach Liaisons, supported by NHTSA, about issues in traffic adjudication. The remaining videos will be released throughout 2018. In this first video, judges discuss the issues surrounding toxicology for substances other than alcohol.

Related Resources

Marijuana-Impaired Driving: A Report to CongressNHTSA (July 2017). The report describes the absorption, distribution and elimination of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinal (THC) the primary psychoactive substance in marijuana, in the body. It contrasts this process with the absorption, distribution and elimination of alcohol in the body, as they are very different processes. The poor correlation of THC concentrations in the blood with impairment is discussed, along with the implication that setting per se levels is not meaningful, and some of the challenges of measuring driving impairment resulting from marijuana use are reviewed.

Drugs and Human Performance Fact SheetNHTSA (Revised April 2014). These Fact Sheets represent the state of current scientific knowledge in the area of drugs and human performance for the 16 drugs selected for evaluation. The selected drugs include over-the-counter medications such as dextromethorphan and diphenhydramine; prescription medications such as carisoprodol, diazepam and zolpidem; and abused and/or illegal drugs such as cocaine, GHB, ketamine, LSD, marijuana, methadone, methamphetamine, MDMA, morphine, PCP and toluene.

Drug Impaired Driving: A Guide for StatesGovernors Highway Safety Administration (April 2017). This guide summarizes the most current research and laws surrounding marijuana, other drugs, and drugged driving. The guide gives background on the chemistry of drugs, talks about the prosecution process, and gives recommendations for education and research programs.

State Laws By Issue: Drug Impaired DrivingGovernors Highway Safety Administration (March 2017). This website gives an overview of the drug impaired driving laws in each state, including statistics on how many states have zero tolerance laws and per se laws.

Cannabis and Road Safety: Policy ChallengesTIRF (October 2016). This study collected information regarding standing drugged driving policy and analyzed areas in which drugged driving policy needs to progress.