The rapid adoption of laws legalizing marijuana sweeping the country increases challenges for truck fleet managers, finds recent research from the American Transportation Research Institute.
“As an industry committed to workplace and roadway safety, we owe it to ourselves and our families to make sure we can screen to maintain a clean and sober workforce,” says Minnesota Trucking Association President John Hausladen.
“Minnesota recently joined the growing list of states legalizing recreational marijuana,” he adds. “This action underscores the critical need for tools to effectively determine marijuana impairment by current and prospective employees.”
ATRI’s first-ever research into the impact of marijuana on trucking outlines several steps that need to be taken to effectively tackle the issue.
- More robust data collection is needed at the state- and federal-level to understand the prevalence and safety outcomes that result from marijuana-impaired driving.
- Safety campaigns must be employed to mitigate driving while impaired by marijuana, particularly among non-commercial drivers.
- Law enforcement requires better tools and more training to identify marijuana-impaired driving; a quantitative field sobriety testing device does not currently exist.
There are currently 23 states where recreational marijuana can be legally purchased and consumed, and approximately half of the U.S. population lives in those states. Likely more states will move in this direction since polls show a majority of Americans (59%) support legalization.
The report is available through ATRI’s website.