Pot activist disagrees with UBC study on pot-related traffic fatalities

File photo. A marijuana activist is taking a UBC study linking marijauana use on April 20th to fatal crashes in the United States with a grain of salt. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Lars Hagberg

Marijauna activist Dana Larsen says a recent study linking fatal traffic accidents to pot-users on April 20 in the U.S. doesn’t have enough evidence to stand up.

“There’s an effort to fear monger and scare people around cannabis legalization, and to convince people that somehow legalization is going to lead to more dangerous roads and more cannabis-consuming drivers,” says Larsen.

He adds there are other explanations as to why this number could be higher.

“It’s a statistical analysis looking at what happens on April 20 compared to what happens I think on April 13 and saying this is because of cannabis. They simply don’t have any evidence for that. Certainly many people celebrate 420 by drinking alcohol and using cannabis together and that can be impairing, and that might be the cause for this slight change of numbers.”

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“420 is sort of a holiday day that they use to celebrate, not everybody just smokes cannabis on 420,” says Larsen.

The University of British Columbia (UBC) study says deaths increased slightly in most but not all states.

Most accidents had no police data on drug testing and there is no way to confirm that marijuana was involved, but researchers believe the drug was responsible for at least some of them.

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