Pretty much everyone knows about the dangers of drunk driving. However, not too many people are aware of the risks of drugged driving. Driving under the influence of certain substances can really impact your overall safety while on the road…

Drugged Driving: Knowing The Risks

What it is

Drugged driving, much like drunk driving, is a pretty straightforward issue. It’s what occurs when someone tries to drive while under the influence of some type of substance which changes their behavior. Often times, it’s substances which impact a person’s reaction time or vision, much like alcohol.

However, it isn’t as common as drunk driving. Among drivers 16 or older, 12.8 million drove drugged, as compared to the 21 million who drove drunk. Still, that’s a very high number, and it can be just as dangerous as if you were to drive drunk. Plus, like drunk driving, it’s illegal in every state, even if that state has things like marijuana legalized.

Drugs in question

Drugged driving can happen after a person consumes a wide range of different drugs. However, these drugs don’t just have to be illegal ones. In fact, legal prescriptions or over-the-counter drugs can also severely impact a person’s driving ability. These tend to be the types of drug which most people don’t realize can cause them to engage in drugged driving.

For example, marijuana can impair a person’s reaction time and their judgement. By contrast, something like cocaine can encourage very reckless or aggressive driving. Even things like opioids or sedatives can cause drowsiness, dizziness, and overall lessened thinking skills.


There’s a few ways in which people can help prevent drugged driving. For starters, they should avoid getting behind the wheel after they take drugs which can impact their ability to drive. This can be done by having a designated driver, or by using a ride sharing service instead of driving themselves.

It also comes down to awareness. Many people aren’t actually aware of just how dangerous it can be to drive under the influence of these drugs. This is especially true for prescriptions, as people don’t always recognize the side-effects. Talking to your friends or family can help make them aware of just how risky it can be.