High Drives = High Crimes
Missouri now has "legalized weed." But whether you are using marijuana recreationally or for a medical purpose, driving high is a crime.
Keep it legal. Be safe.
Driving under the influence—whether the influence is alcohol, marijuana or some other drug—is illegal and always entails potentially fatal risks. Impaired driving accounts for about 20% of all Missouri traffic fatalities, according to the state’s Department of Transportation.
While alcohol-related traffic fatalities have declined 34% in the state since 2010, there’s been a 49% increase in drug-impaired traffic deaths.
Be Safe & Avoid Drugged Driving
● Take public transportation;
● Designate a sober driver;
● Call an Uber, Lyft, or other ride-sharing app;
● Or stay home when using marijuana
Getting A DUI For Being High? Yes, It’s Possible.
Driving under the influence of marijuana is not only unsafe for you and those around you, it can result in the same federal penalties as driving under the influence of alcohol. (If you get a DUI while on federal land, the penalties are severe: a maximum $5,000 fine and a maximum of six months in jail.)
● Driving under the influence of marijuana compromises judgment and affects other skills like alertness, concentration, coordination and reaction time. This is part of why it’s illegal.
● Marijuana and alcohol don’t mix and highly increase your chance of being in an accident. Even small amounts of alcohol, when combined with marijuana use, can be very dangerous—more so than either one alone.
● The effects of inhaling marijuana can last up to 6 hours, while the effects of ingesting marijuana can last up to 12 hours. Regardless, residual effects of the substance can last up to 24 hours on the body. Know the impact and intensity of medical marijuana, and don’t drive if you are within these timeframes.
» Centers for Disease Control & Prevention: What You Need To Know About Marijuana Use And Driving
The Laws & Repercussions Of Driving While High
Seventeen states have zero tolerance laws regarding the use of marijuana while driving. Although Missouri doesn't currently have any laws specifically regarding marijuana use and operating motor vehicle, the state's DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) statutes can be applied:
"A person commits the offense of driving while intoxicated if he or she operates a vehicle while in an intoxicated condition." (Missouri Revised Statutes 577.010)
If you’re pulled over and show signs of being high, field sobriety tests will be performed to check for a probable cause for arrest. A first-time DWI offense is a Class B misdemeanor in Missouri with penalties up to six months in jail, a $1,000 fine and a 30-day license suspension (to be followed with having a 60-day restricted license).
"Driving While Intoxicated" doesn't mean only drunk driving, but driving while under intoxicated or under the impaired influence of drugs, including prescription medications.
From The Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety
“While the dangers of drunk driving are relatively well known, impaired driving is not limited to alcohol use. It also consists of drugs, including prescription medications, and physical impairments such as drowsy driving, poor vision, or reduced cognitive capabilities. For the past several decades, significant strides have been made in addressing drunk driving through a combination of public messaging, tougher laws, and increased enforcement. While alcohol related fatalities have declined, drug related fatalities have steadily increased over the last five years. Furthermore, new challenges have presented themselves in recent years such as the national opioid crises and increasing usage of marijuana among drivers. It is important for all Missourians to understand it’s never okay to drive impaired, regardless of the substance.”