While national safe driving campaigns historically have focused on drunk driving, driving while under the influence of drugs has become a similarly destructive problem nationwide. Driving under the influence of drugs such as marijuana, opiates, and cocaine is a big problem in the state of Wisconsin and in many other states, as well. According to a CBS news report, a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) showed that 18% of drivers killed in accidents tested positive for at least one drug. Plus, in a 2014 study, the National Institute on Drug Abuse found that over 10 million people ages 12 and older acknowledged driving under the influence of illegal drugs. As a result, there is clearly a correlation between drug usage, driving, and death.
Using data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the report concluded that the state of Wisconsin had one of the highest rates of drugged drivers out of all the states. That data indicated that 4.8% of all Wisconsin and New Mexico drivers admitted to driving while under the influence of an illicit drug on at last one occasion in the previous year. Washington, Nevada, and Minnesota had similar rates of drugged driving, at 4.9% of all drivers, followed by Maine, the District of Columbia, and Connecticut at 5.0%. These states were followed by Michigan and Wyoming. Oklahoma, Delaware, and Arkansas tied for 8th place. Rounding out the top ten were Colorado, Oregon, Montana, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Rhode Island in 1st place, with 7.8% of motorists admitting to driving while under the influence of illegal drugs.
As this post indicates, drugged driving is a significant problem that affects not only the state of Wisconsin, but also every other state nationwide. If drugged driving or another type of negligence led to an accident in which you or a loved one sustained serious injuries, you may have a valid legal claim for compensation. For more information about whether you have a personal injury claim, and, if so, how you should proceed, contact the Wisconsin personal injury lawyers of Boller & Vaughan today.