DUI is the leading cause of death on Washington roadways, causing nearly half of the 439 fatalities on King County roads during 2012. That’s why between Aug. 16 and Sept. 2, extra officers will be looking for drivers under the influence of alcohol, marijuana or other drugs during the annual ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ campaign.
Even though Washington legalized marijuana for adults 21 and older, it is still illegal and dangerous to drive under the influence of marijuana. Studies have found that marijuana-positive drivers are twice as likely to crash as other drivers. Marijuana use can slow reaction time, decrease the ability of a driver to maintain lane position, and diminish the ability to pay attention to the tasks of driving. It also interferes with a driver’s ability to perform divided-attention tasks, such as steering and maintaining vehicle speed at the same time.
Officers can tell when a driver is experiencing other effects of marijuana influence such as relaxed inhibitions, altered perception of time and distance, disorientation, incomplete thought processes and increased pulse.
The Auburn, Bellevue, Black Diamond, Burien, Clyde Hill, Covington, Des Moines, Duvall, Enumclaw, Federal Way, Issaquah, Kent, Kirkland, Maple Valley, Mercer Island, Newcastle, North Bend, Port of Seattle, Redmond, Renton, Sammamish, Seatac, Seattle, Snoqualmie, Tukwila and Woodinville Police Departments and the Washington State Patrol will participate in this ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ campaign.
The King County Target Zero Task Force organizes and supports this enforcement effort.