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Study: drugged driving up, drunk driving down

Here in Houston, we have repeatedly seen local news reports about the violence and tragedy that are generated by drivers who are high on drugs. According to a study by the Governors Highway Safety Association, drugs are being detected more and more in drivers who cause crashes that take lives.

According to the GHSA research, about 44 percent of tests on drivers who died in motor vehicle accidents in 2016 showed that they had drugs in their systems - up from 28 percent just a decade earlier.

USA Today says something to keep in mind when pondering the study: traces of marijuana remain in the body much longer than alcohol does. So a test might show traces of marijuana that was used days or even weeks ago.

Of the drivers that tested positive for drugs after fatal 2016 wrecks, more than half of them tested positive for multiple substances that could include street drugs as well as prescription medications.

"Different drugs have different impairing effects in different drivers," said GHSA in a statement. "Drugs can impair, and drug-impaired drivers can crash."

As evidence of drugged driving becomes more pronounced, drunk driving appears to be decreasing, USA Today reports. Of those drivers killed in 2016, 38 percent were alcohol impaired. A decade earlier, 41 percent had been driving drunk.

Those who have been harmed by a driver intoxicated by drugs or alcohol should speak with a lawyer experienced in personal injury litigation. Contact Tritico Rainey, PLLC for more information about your legal options.

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