How Legal Drug Use can Lead to a DUI

Most cases of DUI or driving under the influence and DWI or driving while intoxicated, are the result of consuming alcohol or using illegal drugs. However, using legal drugs sold over the counter by presenting prescriptions can result in impaired driving and probable arrest too, according to Nashville, TN DUI defense lawyers.

The Effects of Legal Drugs

There are a couple typical elements of a DUI offense:

  • The individual operated a vehicle.
  • At the same time the person was intoxicated and his or her ability to drive safely was impacted to a substantial or a certain degree by alcohol or drugs, or both.

Both these elements are reasons enough to have anyone arrested and put in jail. However, a person can be legally punished in a similar way for legal drugs and Nashville, Tennessee DUI lawyers have seen this happen many times. Any individual impaired by the use of legal drugs might be found guilty and punished for driving a vehicle under the influence, just as in drunk driving. You can find legal help to thwart the prosecution’s case by using this fantastic Internet source.

Some states like Tennessee have extensive sections on this subject in their DUI laws, and specifically mention a few of the probable drugs that can cause impairment such as depressants, narcotic drugs, stimulant substances, or depressants. It is a punishable offense if any driver in Tennessee is found with any amount of marijuana in his/her blood or urine while driving, as per Tenn. Code Ann. § 55-10-401.

All these signify that like illegal drugs, legal drugs can also result in addiction and impairment. Unfortunately, there are no established standards for the amount of a drug present in a person’s system without being impaired, as per Tennessee DUI defense lawyers.


NHTSA Concerns

This is a critical issue that has come to the attention of the NHTSA or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that is anxious over the ill effects of drugs on those who drive motor vehicles. NHTSA found that drunk driving has been decreasing noticeably over the past few years while around 16 percent of nighttime drivers were found to have some kind of impairing drug found in their blood or urine during testing.

The NHTSA has prepared a list of possibly impairing drugs that includes illegal drugs, as well as prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs like sedatives, stimulants, sedatives, narcotic analgesics, and antidepressants. Nashville, Tennessee DUI lawyers are familiar with this list and have spoken with many clients who have first-hand knowledge of these illicit drugs.

The NHTSA is of the opinion that to determine which of the drugs and dosages impair driving motor vehicles can be a difficult task considering the large number potentially impairing drugs. The organization has even convened a panel of experts to initiate identifying methods for evaluating impairment.

Meanwhile, the behavior patterns of a typical driver under the influence of legal drugs are obvious. This includes steering a vehicle all over the road, performing irresponsible maneuvers, inability to notice street signs, or displaying slower reaction to road events and hazards. These behavior patterns when driving also pertain to individuals who have consumed drugs legally, which is why they are liable to be charged with a DUI.

Laws not Definitive

Since DUI includes not only alcohol and illegal drugs, the attention of the police has turned to legal drugs. Legal pros are of the opinion that the laws regarding this are still not clearly defined. However, drivers ought to be careful about the legal drugs they take.

If you have been prescribed specific drugs by your doctor and find yourself charged with DUI, it would be prudent to seek help from a Tennessee DUI lawyer right away. Laws on impaired driving can change frequently, so make sure to seek the right legal help. Do not have the yellow pages? You do not need that. You also do not need to wait for some day time lawyer commercial to come on TV either. You can find fabulous legal assistance in minutes using this site: