In a province already plagued with the highest rates of impaired driving in Canada, a new survey shows many people in Saskatchewan fear legal marijuana will only make it worse.
The survey by Desjardins Group shows almost 90 per cent of respondents are concerned about drug-impaired driving, with 69 per cent believing there will be an increase and 72 per cent who don’t feel the country is ready to deal with people driving high.
The online survey polled 3,020 people of driving age across Canada in March 2018.
In Saskatchewan, 84 per cent of those who responded to the survey stated they don’t believe police have the proper tools to identify drivers impaired by marijuana.
In addition to roadside saliva tests recently approved for use by police across Canada, police forces are also investing in specialized training for drug recognition experts who use a series of tests to determine a person’s level of impairment by any drug in order to lay charges.
Statistics Canada recently found that one in every seven people who used marijuana also admitted to driving within two hours of consuming it. According to the same national cannabis survey, 16 per cent of Canadians over the age of 15 reported using marijuana in the last three months but the rate in Saskatchewan was about 10 per cent.
A report from the Traffic Injury Research Foundation showed the percentage of drivers killed in car crashes who tested positive for marijuana rose from 15 per cent in 2000 to 20 per cent in 2015.