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Viral
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2006 2:04 am
Posts: 1894
PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 10:11 pm 
 

Article wrote:
Police across Canada will have new powers to investigate drivers suspected of being impaired by drugs starting July 2, when penalties for driving while impaired will also go up.

Police who suspect drug impairment will have authority to require roadside physical co-ordination tests to gauge sobriety. If, in the opinion of the officer, the suspect fails, then the driver will be taken to a police detachment to be tested by a "drug evaluation expert," which all police services will likely have to train.

Neither city police officials or the South Bruce OPP media relations officer were familiar enough with the changes to comment.

However, Ontario Provincial Police Chief Superintendent Bill Grodzinski, commander of the OPP highway safety division, said Wednesday that "what we're seeing is a very significant shift . . . What we're seeing is more drug-impaired operators."

The legislation "provides police with that additional help that we want." The drug evaluations experts will have authority to demand samples of saliva, urine or blood to determine the presence of alcohol or a drug without a warrant, Department of Justice spokeswoman Carole Saindon said.

Tests on the fluids can detect seven families of drugs, although there's no specific drug impairment level as there is for alcohol.

It will take "a number of years" to train enough officers as drug evaluation experts, said Grodzinski, the chairman of an Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police committee consulted about the legislation. The drug evaluations will include measurements of blood pressure, body temperature and pulse, assess pupil size and muscle tone to determine impairment, Saindon said. The legislation allows roadside and detachment tests to be video-recorded.

The changes are part of the federal government's Tackling Violent Crime Bill, some aspects of which have already taken effect including higher mandatory prison sentences for violent crimes, making it tougher to get bail and raising the age of sexual consent.

Minimum penalties for impaired driving by alcohol or a drug will climb to $1,000 from $600 for a first offense, 30 days in jail instead of 14 upon a second conviction and 120 days in jail for subsequent convictions, up from 90 days.

Refusing or failing to comply with police demands for drug sobriety tests or bodily fluid samples will lead to the same minimum $1,000 fine and one-year driving prohibition on a first offense as would be imposed for a drinking and driving conviction.

It will also be an offense for a driver who knows or should know they have caused a fatal accident to refuse to take a drug impairment test or provide samples. The maximum penalty under that provision is a life sentence.

Grodzinski also noted new, more accurate, breath-testing equipment should be arriving at OPP detachments this fall at a cost of $2 million.

"Impaired driving continues to be the leading cause of criminal death in Canada" despite great reductions over the years. In Ontario, about one-quarter of the road fatalities are alcohol-related, according to the Ministry of Transportation.

Meanwhile, provincial legislation will target drivers with some alcohol in their system, but not enough to be charged criminally.

Grodzinski said they will be "the toughest sanctions in the country and everyone is looking at them" when they take effect, which he understands will happen this fall.

The Safer Roads for a Safer Ontario Act would increase roadside driving suspensions for people who blow a warning, or 0.05 to 0.08 blood alcohol concentration, in roadside tests to three days for a first offense instead of 12 hours and seven days for a second offense. The driver will also have to take a remedial course.

Third or subsequent instances incur a 30-day suspension and the driver must undergo a remedial measures course and limit their driving to a vehicle with a ignition lock requiring breath samples for six months.

The act also lets authorities seize vehicles from people who continue to drink and drive.


Source: http://www.owensoundsuntimes.com/Articl ... ?e=1079877
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Bezerko
Vladimir Poopin

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 2:35 am 
 

How is the "draconian" in the slightest? I mean, it's no different than good old random drug testing. If you're not doing drugs before or during driving, you're fine. If you're idiotic enough to get stoned or drunk behind the wheel, you deserve all you get.

Giving police a right to pull people off the road before they endanger lives should be commonplace, not considered as draconian. :nono:

North America seems obsessed with "freedom" to the point of paranoia.

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paskogen
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 5:34 am 
 

Bezerko wrote:
How is the "draconian" in the slightest? I mean, it's no different than good old random drug testing. If you're not doing drugs before or during driving, you're fine. If you're idiotic enough to get stoned or drunk behind the wheel, you deserve all you get.

Giving police a right to pull people off the road before they endanger lives should be commonplace, not considered as draconian. :nono:

North America seems obsessed with "freedom" to the point of paranoia.


This IS draconian, practically by definition, for many reasons, not the least of which is it's obvious potential for abuse.

There is now absolutely no criterion necessary to stop a vehicle for whatever reason the police deem necessary.
Stoned drivers do not hit little girls at the Wendy's drive through. They don't cause problems at all, and this is an obscene waste of money and effort, especially when (assuming Canadian police are similar to ours in this big state to the west) the current roster of officers (who "don't have the manpower") are unresponsive to calls regarding even the most heinous acts involving possible violent crime and destruction/theft of property (the only issues they should be dealing with in the first place.)

It's just another long-armed reach from the greedy government into the pockets of completely docile citizens under the guise of "improving public welfare," and it is an unnecessary and unwarranted attack on the civil liberties of those citizens, and is particularly despicable operating as part of the "Tackling Violent Crime" bill..what a joke.. If Australia doesn't value freedom as much as I'd like to think we do here, I'm glad there isn't a nearby border across which such attitudes and support for such nanny-istic behavior may bleed and your officials may roam.
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caspian
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 6:24 am 
 

paskogen wrote:
Stoned drivers do not hit little girls at the Wendy's drive through. They don't cause problems at all


:scratch:

Basically, I agree entirely with Bezerko. If you're drunk or stoned and driving, you are an idiot. This isn't a 'nanny state' issue at all; you're a danger to yourself and other people.

Quote:
Minimum penalties for impaired driving by alcohol or a drug will climb to $1,000 from $600 for a first offense, 30 days in jail instead of 14 upon a second conviction and 120 days in jail for subsequent convictions, up from 90 days.


Surprised by just how much harsher that is. You wouldn't get a 30 day jail sentence here for drink driving, unless if you killed a dude.
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Bezerko
Vladimir Poopin

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 6:46 am 
 

caspian wrote:
paskogen wrote:
Stoned drivers do not hit little girls at the Wendy's drive through. They don't cause problems at all


:scratch:

Basically, I agree entirely with Bezerko. If you're drunk or stoned and driving, you are an idiot. This isn't a 'nanny state' issue at all; you're a danger to yourself and other people.


Indeed, when someone you know gets killed in an alcohol related accident, will you be changing your opinion? If I remember correctly, around 75% of accidental deaths in Australia are alcohol related. SEVENTY FIVE PERCENT, and stoned drivers are just as bad if not worse. How can you seriously say that they don't cause any problems?

Australia values freedom, but we also value common sense.

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caspian
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 6:56 am 
 

I doubt 75% of ALL accidental deaths are alcohol related; we love our beer down here but not that much.
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Scorpio
Healthy Dose of Reality

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 7:26 am 
 

Bezerko wrote:
How is the "draconian" in the slightest? I mean, it's no different than good old random drug testing. If you're not doing drugs before or during driving, you're fine. If you're idiotic enough to get stoned or drunk behind the wheel, you deserve all you get.


If you read carefully, it says that there are no impairment levels for substances other than alcohol. Ergo, I think what that means is that if you test positive, you're in trouble no even if you're not intoxicated. I consider that draconian. You can get punished for driving 'offenses' due to drug use despite the fact that said drug use might have no bearing whatsoever on your road performance.
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Bezerko
Vladimir Poopin

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 7:30 am 
 

caspian wrote:
I doubt 75% of ALL accidental deaths are alcohol related; we love our beer down here but not that much.


Well, I THINK (can't remember much to be honest) I may have got that figure from Sunrise, so it's probably inflated. :P To be honest, it wouldn't surprise me however.

Scorpio wrote:
Bezerko wrote:
How is the "draconian" in the slightest? I mean, it's no different than good old random drug testing. If you're not doing drugs before or during driving, you're fine. If you're idiotic enough to get stoned or drunk behind the wheel, you deserve all you get.


If you read carefully, it says that there are no impairment levels for substances other than alcohol. Ergo, I think what that means is that if you test positive, you're in trouble no even if you're not intoxicated. I consider that draconian. You can get punished for driving 'offenses' due to drug use despite the fact that said drug use might have no bearing whatsoever on your road performance.


Hmm, fair point. I guess in a situation like that, it would fall to the discretion of the police officer? That said, if there is no visible affects, a test would most likely not be given. Of course, if your car smells like pot, you're probably going to arouse quite a bit of suspicion anyway...

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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 7:40 am 
 

Bezerko wrote:
Indeed, when someone you know gets killed in an alcohol related accident, will you be changing your opinion? If I remember correctly, around 75% of accidental deaths in Australia are alcohol related. SEVENTY FIVE PERCENT, and stoned drivers are just as bad if not worse. How can you seriously say that they don't cause any problems?

Australia values freedom, but we also value common sense.


While I hardly advocate driving stoned, it is not as hazardous as driving drunk.
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caspian
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 8:10 am 
 

Can you really offer any sort of proof that it isn't as hazardous?
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 8:23 am 
 

caspian wrote:
Can you really offer any sort of proof that it isn't as hazardous?


http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn2 ... juana.html
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Earthcubed
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 9:29 am 
 

So is it the punishment that's being called draconian here, or the fact they can pull you over on suspicion? If it's the second, then I don't see what the problem is. It's not really any different than here in the U.S., and nobody whines about it because there's nothing to whine about. If you are driving in a manner which raises questions about your sobriety, you get pulled over. How else are they supposed to catch drunk drivers? Wait for them to plow someone over a bridge?


As for the actual punishments, they are fair----driving while intoxicated on pretty much anything is beyond stupid and beyond reckless. A minimum first-offense fee of 5,000 dollars would barely be enough, 1,000 is nothing.


Scorpio wrote:

If you read carefully, it says that there are no impairment levels for substances other than alcohol. Ergo, I think what that means is that if you test positive, you're in trouble no even if you're not intoxicated.



Article wrote:
The drug evaluations will include measurements of blood pressure, body temperature and pulse, assess pupil size and muscle tone to determine impairment, Saindon said.




I don't think weed, heroin, cocaine or any other drug would significantly affect your body temperature, pulse, pupil size or muscle tone days after you last consumed it. Perhaps I'm wrong, but I imagine those things are limited to the duration of the high or shortly afterward, and thus it would be reasonable to assume the person was still high when they were caught.
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Napero
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 9:55 am 
 

I completely fail to see the logic in calling this law draconian; also, I disagree with the impairment issue. It's not necessary to be on the Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas level to be hazardous, and knowing the effects of various drugs from literature (and the MA board, thank you dear pubescent experimenters), I would not trust anyone under the influence of anything behind the wheel. They do not necessarily have a gay algae-green unicorn as their co-pilot, but drugs are being used for the effect they have on the mind, and a clear mind is exactly what a person needs behind the wheel.

I'm a relatively heavy beer drinker myself, and even if I feel sober after a sixpack sometimes, I know it for a fact that I'm not fit to drive at that point. Is it really necessary to point the same thing out to people who wish to get stoned?

I remember seeing a document about the laws on mandatory motorcycle helmet use in the USA. There was a dude who thought he was an "anti-helmet legislation activist", and he had a wonderful idea: "the problem is not the motorists that drive without a helmet, the problem are the car drivers who cut motorcyclists off and cause accidents that kill people." The logic here is as goofy as that: "I think the problem is not people under the influence causing accidents, the problem is the police having the rights to check if someone is under the influence, because that's against my rights (and interferes with me driving under the influence)."
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 1:41 pm 
 

Quote:
I don't think weed, heroin, cocaine or any other drug would significantly affect your body temperature, pulse, pupil size or muscle tone days after you last consumed it. Perhaps I'm wrong, but I imagine those things are limited to the duration of the high or shortly afterward, and thus it would be reasonable to assume the person was still high when they were caught.


Those aren't the tests that cop who pulls the person over will perform. They'll be performed by the 'drug evaluation expert.' Whether or not you see him will depend upon the cop's own sobriety test, which measures coordination. Failing a subjective sobriety test by not dancing about nimbly enough to satisfy the officer is not itself illegal. My point is that the potential exists for someone to be prosecuted for driving while intoxicated even though he's not actually intoxicated, but rather he was intoxicated at some point in the past at which he may not have been driving.
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Khroshan
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 1:48 pm 
 

Scorpio wrote:
caspian wrote:
Can you really offer any sort of proof that it isn't as hazardous?


http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn2 ... juana.html


Its actually a fact that marijuana is both less harmful to the health, and also less addictive than either cigarettes or alcohol. Yet, marijuana is illegal, while the other two are not.

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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 1:49 pm 
 

Quote:
There was a dude who thought he was an "anti-helmet legislation activist", and he had a wonderful idea: "the problem is not the motorists that drive without a helmet, the problem are the car drivers who cut motorcyclists off and cause accidents that kill people."


I detest the idea that the state forces motorcycle drivers to wear helmets or car drivers to wear seatbelts. If I don't wear a seatbelt or helmet, who might it hurt? Only me. I don't want to be protected from my own will by the state. Let me put myself in danger if I'd like. It's my own business.
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Napero
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 2:28 pm 
 

Scorpio wrote:
Quote:
There was a dude who thought he was an "anti-helmet legislation activist", and he had a wonderful idea: "the problem is not the motorists that drive without a helmet, the problem are the car drivers who cut motorcyclists off and cause accidents that kill people."


I detest the idea that the state forces motorcycle drivers to wear helmets or car drivers to wear seatbelts. If I don't wear a seatbelt or helmet, who might it hurt? Only me. I don't want to be protected from my own will by the state. Let me put myself in danger if I'd like. It's my own business.

That's sound logic, and I sort of agree, as long as my insurances do not get more expensive if you do that, in other words, if you drive without a seatbelt you either pay more for your insurance or lose the payment if you get hurt. That's really as simple as that, if you feel you're mature and freedom-loving enough to make your own choices, don't expect me to pay for them.

The faulty logic in my example was the fact that the dude was completely correct in his idea that one of the main causes for motorcycle accidents indeed is a careless car driver, but the helmet is not meant to stop the accident from happening, it's there to lessen the injuries. Apples and oranges.

EDIT: the same goes for tax money funded healthcare. That's the way I'd legislate these things: either follow the law or pay for it yourself in case something happens. Because, hey, that's what personal responsibility means if you want to take it in case of seatbelts and helmets.
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Bonesnap
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 7:24 pm 
 

Scorpio wrote:
Quote:
There was a dude who thought he was an "anti-helmet legislation activist", and he had a wonderful idea: "the problem is not the motorists that drive without a helmet, the problem are the car drivers who cut motorcyclists off and cause accidents that kill people."


I detest the idea that the state forces motorcycle drivers to wear helmets or car drivers to wear seatbelts. If I don't wear a seatbelt or helmet, who might it hurt? Only me. I don't want to be protected from my own will by the state. Let me put myself in danger if I'd like. It's my own business.

That's fine, but then you must waive all responsibility from the state should you become injured. Pay your own medical bills and get yourself to the hospital. Why should the hospital send out an ambulance to someone who doesn't care to wear his/her seatbelt, when it could be sent out to a "real" accident and help a "real" victim? Waste a bed in the hospital, doctor hours, resources, money, etc. on someone who apparently doesn't care about his/her on welfare?

Also, not wearing a seatbelt leaves open the great possibility of being ejected from the vehicle. Who knows who or what your flying body might hit. More often than not, you'd probably hit nothing of importance, but does anyone want to take that chance?
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rexxz
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 8:19 pm 
 

Bonesnap wrote:
That's fine, but then you must waive all responsibility from the state should you become injured. Pay your own medical bills and get yourself to the hospital.


We already do, here in America. And yes we have to pay ambulance fees, too.

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PvtNinjer
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 10:52 pm 
 

Has anyone who's speaking against driving stone actually driven stoned? I'm not necissarily saying you should smoke every time you get in your car, but it's honestly not that difficult... Maybe I just smoke alot of pot so I'm not quite as physically impaired as someone who's less accustomed to the effects, but I'm fairly alert when high (possibly more so). Driving stoned AND tired, is a really bad idea though.

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Bonesnap
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 10:56 pm 
 

rexxz wrote:
Bonesnap wrote:
That's fine, but then you must waive all responsibility from the state should you become injured. Pay your own medical bills and get yourself to the hospital.


We already do, here in America. And yes we have to pay ambulance fees, too.

Yeah, I forgot about that, but the rest of my post still stands.
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 12:13 am 
 

Bonesnap wrote:
That's fine, but then you must waive all responsibility from the state should you become injured. Pay your own medical bills and get yourself to the hospital. Why should the hospital send out an ambulance to someone who doesn't care to wear his/her seatbelt, when it could be sent out to a "real" accident and help a "real" victim? Waste a bed in the hospital, doctor hours, resources, money, etc. on someone who apparently doesn't care about his/her on welfare?


The solution is to pay for these services if you desire them. That was an easy problem to solve...

Quote:
Also, not wearing a seatbelt leaves open the great possibility of being ejected from the vehicle. Who knows who or what your flying body might hit. More often than not, you'd probably hit nothing of importance, but does anyone want to take that chance?


The likelihood of that happening is too insignificant to be worth considering.
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Napero
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 3:06 am 
 

How many people would actually check a box labelled "I will not use seatbelts/motorcycle helmets while driving" in an insurance questionnaire, if checking that led to the actual probablilities and costs of the habit to be reflected in the yearly invoices from the insurance company? Very, very few, I'd bet.

As far as I understand, even in the USA people don't wish to pay the actual medical bills, they pay for insurance. Insurance companies must get their money back and then some, so the extra costs from unused seatbelts can be found in the bils they send to people, no matter if they personally wear their belts or not.
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lord_ghengis
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 3:34 am 
 

Scorpio wrote:
Quote:
There was a dude who thought he was an "anti-helmet legislation activist", and he had a wonderful idea: "the problem is not the motorists that drive without a helmet, the problem are the car drivers who cut motorcyclists off and cause accidents that kill people."


I detest the idea that the state forces motorcycle drivers to wear helmets or car drivers to wear seatbelts. If I don't wear a seatbelt or helmet, who might it hurt? Only me. I don't want to be protected from my own will by the state. Let me put myself in danger if I'd like. It's my own business.


That's the nature of all road rules, in order to keep the total number of deaths on roads down, the state needs to do shit like that. I hate speed limits, I feel that I'm a comfortable driver at well over 110kms an hour, that doesn't change the fact that as a whole, speed limits need to be enforced to keep the road toll down. Admittedly, seatbelts and helmets are different, because of the only significant danger is to the individual doing it (and others in the car for the seatbelts though), but it's the same idea. It is the governments job to stop people from dying on the roads, even if that means stopping people from killing themselves.
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paskogen
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 3:54 am 
 

caspian wrote:
Can you really offer any sort of proof that it isn't as hazardous?


proof: i personally know dozens of people who drive stoned every day and have never lost a single point on their record. and i know no one that is a significantly worse driver under the influence of marijuana than they are "sober." it's simply not that kind of substance.

my argument above was aimed solely at the overall lack of necessity for a program (which costs your money) targeting already clearly unproblematic drivers while suffering the opportunity costs associated with a laughable lack of resources on the part of law enforcement agencies. drunk driving is a serious problem with serious consequences and should be treated as such. i incorrectly assumed people would realize the non-alcohol basis for my opinion.

being stoned and being drunk are so incredibly different that they are absolutely and entirely incomparable, especially as far as driving risk is concerned. if you don't already know that, you don't have the prerequisite knowledge to even consider entering this debate.
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Foxx
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 4:19 am 
 

People tend to overestimate the effect that marijuana has on someone driving a car - I think there are numerous studies which demonstrate that while the stoned person who is behind the wheel demonstrates some impairment, it is hardly dramatic (I was looking at this paper the other day which suggested that the impairment given by 300 micrograms/kg of THC is roughly comparable with that of a BAC of .08%) and there's also the fact that the effects of alcohol and that of cannabis are entirely different. Still, I would not oppose these laws as common sense suggests that if you are driving like a drunk you're probably under the influence of something in excessive amounts - whether it be alcohol or an illicit drug.

Oh, and is this entire thing marijuana specific or is it a crackdown on drug-influenced driving as a whole?

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Bezerko
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 5:13 am 
 

It's drugs as a whole, the focus just seems to be on the wacky weed for a number of posts however...

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Corimngul
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 5:17 am 
 

I would assume that various drugs (and even more various combinations thereof) have different effects on your driving capabilities. As most of these substances are illegal to possess and use, I don't really see why you should be able to use them while driving. If you are driving carelessly and/or dangerously you should be taken off the road.

Marijuana seems better in traffic than most substances but when mixed with alcohol - even legal levels - the driver's ability is drastically impaired. So, it's not that easy to rewrite the law should you want it to be "undraconian", promoting safety and following the science.

Scorpio wrote:
Napero wrote:
Also, not wearing a seatbelt leaves open the great possibility of being ejected from the vehicle. Who knows who or what your flying body might hit. More often than not, you'd probably hit nothing of importance, but does anyone want to take that chance?

The likelihood of that happening is too insignificant to be worth considering.


That happens mainly in single accidents, where only one car is involved. The driver loses control, heads off the road and crashes violently into a tree or telephone pole while his person continues forward through the windshield. At least here these accidents tend to happen in unpopulated areas at times of low traffic (when it's very icy, people tend to slow down) so the chance of hitting anything worthwhile is low to say the least.

Now for a motorcyclist who crashes into something and flies away has a larger possibility of hitting something of worth, especially as such crashes aren't unheard of in cities, but I really don't think the helmet would have much effect on whoever he hits.

Yet the likelihood of hitting someone else in the car is not. And what about children? Should they be seated, be able to choose or should it be the driver's choice?
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 6:48 am 
 

Quote:
Marijuana seems better in traffic than most substances but when mixed with alcohol - even legal levels - the driver's ability is drastically impaired. So, it's not that easy to rewrite the law should you want it to be "undraconian", promoting safety and following the science.


It is not that difficult. They could determine how much of a given substance is needed to impair driving, which would allow us to avoid prosecution of individuals who have only an insignificant quantity of a banned substance in their bodies. All that legislators have to do is mimic the alcohol laws.

Quote:
Yet the likelihood of hitting someone else in the car is not.


What is that likelihood? I suspect that it is small. If there's a crash that throws passengers forward, if the rear passenger is to strike a front passenger, he must be catapulted over the front seat. He is unlikely to hit the front driver in this case because he too will be pushed forward, so the rear passenger will sail over his head. I'm speaking hypothetically. Realistically, the rear passenger will be thrown against the back of the front seat.

Quote:
And what about children? Should they be seated, be able to choose or should it be the driver's choice?


Either the first or last.
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Last edited by Scorpio on Sat Jul 05, 2008 7:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 6:56 am 
 

Napero wrote:
How many people would actually check a box labelled "I will not use seatbelts/motorcycle helmets while driving" in an insurance questionnaire, if checking that led to the actual probablilities and costs of the habit to be reflected in the yearly invoices from the insurance company? Very, very few, I'd bet.

As far as I understand, even in the USA people don't wish to pay the actual medical bills, they pay for insurance. Insurance companies must get their money back and then some, so the extra costs from unused seatbelts can be found in the bils they send to people, no matter if they personally wear their belts or not.


If you lie to your insurance company, then it should be able to deny your claims.
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 6:57 am 
 

lord_ghengis wrote:

That's the nature of all road rules, in order to keep the total number of deaths on roads down, the state needs to do shit like that. I hate speed limits, I feel that I'm a comfortable driver at well over 110kms an hour, that doesn't change the fact that as a whole, speed limits need to be enforced to keep the road toll down. Admittedly, seatbelts and helmets are different, because of the only significant danger is to the individual doing it (and others in the car for the seatbelts though), but it's the same idea. It is the governments job to stop people from dying on the roads, even if that means stopping people from killing themselves.


When was it decided that it's the government's job to stop people from dying on the roads, even if that means stopping them from killing themselves? That appears to be the very thesis to which I am objecting.
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Corimngul
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 7:06 am 
 

Eh, didn't mean seated, meant belted. Suppose you figured anyway. Seated should be obvious.

Scorpio wrote:
It is not that difficult. They could determine how much of a given substance is needed to impair driving, which would allow us to avoid prosecution of individuals who have only an insignificant quantity of a banned substance in their bodies. All that legislators have to do is mimic the alcohol laws.


What I am saying is that as long as an individual sticks to one substance it is easy but the combinations are many and the combinatory effects are not very well-known. Research is needed, yes, but if all harmful combinations are to be properly regulated then the law will be worse than that for bookkeeping for international corporations. You shouldn't need both a lawyer and a doctor to determine if you're able to get into the driver's seat or not.

Scorpio wrote:
What is that likelihood? I suspect that it is small. If there's a crash that throws passengers forward, if the rear passenger is to strike a front passenger, he must be catapulted over the front seat. He is unlikely to hit the front driver in this case because he too will be pushed forward, so the rear passenger will sail over his head.


The main risk is if a passenger in the rear seat is unbelted. At a crash he'll fly forward. If the driver/front passenger is belted he might get a whiplash injury from the rear passenger crashing into his seat - or worse. This is particularly likely in low speeds, up to ca 50 kmph (seat belts don't work that well in high speeds anyway). At higher speeds it's more likely that the rear passenger is, as you say, catapulted over the front seat and thrown out through the windshield.

Hitting others in the car from the front seats aren't very likely, I would think, but I don't have any numbers for this one either. The only number I have about this is that unbelted rear passengers increase the risk of death for belted front passengers four to five times.
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lord_ghengis
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 7:14 am 
 

Scorpio wrote:
lord_ghengis wrote:

That's the nature of all road rules, in order to keep the total number of deaths on roads down, the state needs to do shit like that. I hate speed limits, I feel that I'm a comfortable driver at well over 110kms an hour, that doesn't change the fact that as a whole, speed limits need to be enforced to keep the road toll down. Admittedly, seatbelts and helmets are different, because of the only significant danger is to the individual doing it (and others in the car for the seatbelts though), but it's the same idea. It is the governments job to stop people from dying on the roads, even if that means stopping people from killing themselves.


When was it decided that it's the government's job to stop people from dying on the roads, even if that means stopping them from killing themselves? That appears to be the very thesis to which I am objecting.


It's the government's job to keep people from dying in general, that's why hospitals exist, because they're sure as hell not financially viable on their own. The road is just another place where people are dying, and in general, the public (read as annoying campaigning people) get annoyed seeing so much death due to one thing, and demand that the government fix it. Same with the families of the dead people, a lot of them just think "Why didn't the government stop this from happening" it happens all the time.

I'm generally with you on this, I generally dislike how many road rules there are, although seatbelts are a good thing, due to the damage it does to other passengers in the car. Although helmets are truly only going to affect the rider involved, and in that sense your argument does have some grounds.
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Corimngul
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 7:18 am 
 

lord_ghengis wrote:
Scorpio wrote:
lord_ghengis wrote:

That's the nature of all road rules, in order to keep the total number of deaths on roads down, the state needs to do shit like that. I hate speed limits, I feel that I'm a comfortable driver at well over 110kms an hour, that doesn't change the fact that as a whole, speed limits need to be enforced to keep the road toll down. Admittedly, seatbelts and helmets are different, because of the only significant danger is to the individual doing it (and others in the car for the seatbelts though), but it's the same idea. It is the governments job to stop people from dying on the roads, even if that means stopping people from killing themselves.


When was it decided that it's the government's job to stop people from dying on the roads, even if that means stopping them from killing themselves? That appears to be the very thesis to which I am objecting.


It's the government's job to keep people from dying in general, that's why hospitals exist, because they're sure as hell not financially viable on their own. The road is just another place where people are dying, and in general, the public (read as annoying campaigning people) get annoyed seeing so much death due to one thing, and demand that the government fix it.


It's also very understandable from an economic perspective (and well, the government ought to promote local economy, right?). You just don't want some suicidal idiot blocking the highway for a rush hour or two.

Not to mention how annoying it is to sit in such a queue.
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TheStormIRide
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 2:11 pm 
 

I think that a lot this stems into a tactic police have been using to stop the flow of drugs on main highways and the like. It, at least in Pennsylvania and the surrounding states, is called highway interdiciton. Basically, through training programs, police learn to pick up on subtleties that many highway traffickers show while driving.

This in turn leads to less cases lost by the police when it comes to court. There have been countless cases, where drugs, money and weapons have been seized from vehicles, but no convictions have been made, simply because of a technicality in the traffic stop or in the proces of searching a vehicle. This law leads me to believe that the government doesn't want to lose as many cases in this fashion. Having a broader spectrum to pull people over is going to meet the government's ends in this fashion.

Think of it this way: previously, if a police stopped someone for swerving, then the case may be thrown out, as swerving alone is not an offense that you can be pulled over for (unless you are swerving to the point of endangering others). Now, with the new law in place, it would be feasible to be stopped for swerving, and the courts would go in favor of the police officer, simply because he pulled the person over for suspicion of intoxicated driving.

This is not too far removed from the laws in the United States that allow people to get pulled over for suspicion of intoxicated driving.
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 10:18 pm 
 

Corimngul wrote:
What I am saying is that as long as an individual sticks to one substance it is easy but the combinations are many and the combinatory effects are not very well-known. Research is needed, yes, but if all harmful combinations are to be properly regulated then the law will be worse than that for bookkeeping for international corporations. You shouldn't need both a lawyer and a doctor to determine if you're able to get into the driver's seat or not.


If it is too difficult to determine a limit for each drug interaction, then there should be a limit for each individual drug and persons who combine them but do not exceed any particular limit should be exculpated. It is reasonable to set the limit a bit low for each substance to catch combinations. After all, there is a precedent for tolerating sleep deprived driving, which has been shown to impair performance in proportion to the magnitude of the deprivation. We don't have laws that punish people for driving while sleep deprived for the simple reason that we have no accurate way of judging how sleep deprived drivers are, so we can't tell if being sleep deprived is adversely effecting their driving.

Quote:
The main risk is if a passenger in the rear seat is unbelted. At a crash he'll fly forward. If the driver/front passenger is belted he might get a whiplash injury from the rear passenger crashing into his seat - or worse. This is particularly likely in low speeds, up to ca 50 kmph (seat belts don't work that well in high speeds anyway). At higher speeds it's more likely that the rear passenger is, as you say, catapulted over the front seat and thrown out through the windshield.

Hitting others in the car from the front seats aren't very likely, I would think, but I don't have any numbers for this one either. The only number I have about this is that unbelted rear passengers increase the risk of death for belted front passengers four to five times.


I am not aware of this data - however, allow me to shift the goal posts, if you will (I'd have made this point yesterday if I had my wits about me). Whether or not failing to wear a belt increases the likelihood of injury to other passengers is irrelevant from my perspective, since the owner of the vehicle (or his surrogate) decides whether or not seatbelts are mandatory in the vehicle. Other passengers who disagree with his decision are free to travel by another means.
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 10:41 pm 
 

Corimngul wrote:

It's also very understandable from an economic perspective (and well, the government ought to promote local economy, right?). You just don't want some suicidal idiot blocking the highway for a rush hour or two.

Not to mention how annoying it is to sit in such a queue.


That's like burning your house down to combat an insect infestation. First, the traffic congestion that we avoid by criminalizing seatbelt-less driving is more than offset by the resources we expend on advertising and enforcement. Second, any accident that's severe enough to kill a seatbelt-less motorist will almost certainly muck up traffic in any case.
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lord_ghengis
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 1:38 am 
 

Scorpio wrote:
If it is too difficult to determine a limit for each drug interaction


Limit would be 0 on illicit drugs.
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Scorpio
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 2:13 am 
 

lord_ghengis wrote:
Scorpio wrote:
If it is too difficult to determine a limit for each drug interaction


Limit would be 0 on illicit drugs.


The limit should not be zero because there are amounts of a drug that can be in one's system that do not negatively impact driving performance. If you smoked a joint 3 days ago, it's not going to cause you to drive worse now.
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lord_ghengis
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 3:17 am 
 

Scorpio wrote:
lord_ghengis wrote:
Scorpio wrote:
If it is too difficult to determine a limit for each drug interaction


Limit would be 0 on illicit drugs.


The limit should not be zero because there are amounts of a drug that can be in one's system that do not negatively impact driving performance. If you smoked a joint 3 days ago, it's not going to cause you to drive worse now.


Well, that has nothing to do with driving, that's simple having drugs in the system, not a driving offense, just a simple drug offense. In order for it to count for a driving offense, yes, a limit should be used.
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