LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – The Office of Highway Safety Planning is cautioning recreational cannabis users against using the drug and driving on April 20, more commonly known as 4/20, a for cannabis oriented celebration.

“If you are impaired by drugs or alcohol, you should never get behind the wheel,” said Katie Bower, OHSP director. “We are asking people to use good judgment, obey the law and make safe choices when driving. Your decisions don’t just affect you — they affect everyone on the road.”

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The OHSP and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shared that drug-impaired driving is an increasing danger on the roadways.

“Of the 1,053 fatal crashes that occurred in Michigan in 2022 (the most recent year for which data is available), 229 or 21.7 percent were drug-involved, with at least one drugged driver, bicyclist or pedestrian,” according to the OHSP. “Of the 229 fatal drug-involved crashes, 119 or 52 percent were single vehicle crashes.”

From statistics in 2022, of the 225 motor vehicle drivers suspected of drug use involved in fatal crashes, a majority were male, 79.6%, while the remaining were female, 20.4%.

Potential Impacts of Driving High.

The OHSP shared how cannabis can slow reaction times as well as impaired cognitive performance, therefore making it more difficult to maintain a steady position in a driving lane.

“Those who plan to use cannabis on 4/20 — or any day — should not drive,” Bower said. “If you find yourself drug-impaired, find a sober ride home.”

Under current Michigan law, according to the Michigan State Police, “Drivers with any amount of a Schedule 1 controlled substance and/or cocaine are subject to the same fines and penalties as drunk drivers, even if they show no signs of impairment. The only exception is an individual who has a valid medical marijuana card and is driving with marijuana in his or her system. Under the law, an officer must show they are impaired due to that marijuana.”

Frandor Dispensary in Lansing Plans Event for 4/20.

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Marijuana retailer Pure Options is sponsoring a free event for those 21 and over at its location in Frandor, and is expected to have Rapper Sean Kingston come and perform in concert according to the Lansing State Journal.

The store is among several others in the state offering free samples during the unofficial cannabis holiday.