About 40 Percent Of Drivers Are Comfortable Getting Behind The Wheel After Smoking Pot: Study

Photo: AP
Photo: AP

Smoking weed and then driving? That’s definitely a thing that happens. But fessing up to it? I’m honestly surprised by the results here: A newsurvey of 600 drivers found nearly 40 percent were comfortable getting behind the wheel within two hours of smoking pot.

The survey from Instamotor, which pegs itself as an alternative to buying cars on the used auto market, comes as part of a blog about the laws to regulate driving while under the influence of marijuana.


Eight states and Washington D.C. have legalized the recreational use of pot, but driving high is illegal, Instamotor points out. That’s the tricky part: how do you determine whether someone’s indeed under the influence?

So the website interviewed 600 residents from every state (and D.C.) to see whether or not they get behind the wheel after smoking pot. Here’s what they found:

Of the respondents who said they do use the drug, 39% feel comfortable getting in the driver’s seat within two hours of smoking or consuming marijuana. Of those same respondents, 42% do not feel comfortable driving, and 19% said it varies depending on the particular instance.

Instamotor breaks down the potential penalties and fines for getting caught baked while driving, which, if you partake, could be worth brushing up on. But sooner or later lawmakers are going to have to set about clarifying this, and that includes addressing outright legalization at the federal level.

(h/t @tweetermeyer)

Senior Reporter, Jalopnik/Special Projects Desk

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I’d argue that 100% of drivers are super comfortable getting behind the wheel after smoking pot. It’s when you ask them the question sober that the other 60% of them lie.

In all seriousness, having been through a car accident and then prescribed Oxycontin with zero regulation I drove high as a kite several times. It’s ridiculous that I can’t smoke a joint, and get behind the wheel, but I can grab a fistful of oxys and drive because they’re prescription. Sure I have that little warning that says, “Hey man...maybe you shouldn’t operate heavy machinery” and I say, “ok fine I’ll take my motorcycle. Thanks for the conversation, tiny bottle.”

Short story, drug laws are daft.