The Colorado government is promoting safer pot use, abandoning decades of marijuana abstinence advocacy.
As one of the states where recreational pot smoking is now legal, Colorado is changing its tune from a “just say no” style campaign to messages that encourages safe pot use. The new campaign began last weekend in anticipation of the 4/20 marijuana holiday. The Colorado Department of Transportation dispatched staff over the weekend with snacks branded to remind pot users to munch and not drive. The Department also put free arcade games loaded with messages reminding people not to drive after smoking at marijuana dispensaries.
“With the legalization of marijuana in Colorado, we have a responsibility to pioneer marijuana education campaigns to keep our roadways safe,” said Sam Cole, CDOT’s Communication Manager. “For 2015, we have some unique and eye-catching ways to grab marijuana users’ attention, and hopefully reinforce safe marijuana consumption and laws in the process.”
In February, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration released a study that found marijuana to have little or no correlation between the risk of being in a crash and being a marijuana user.
Current Colorado law specifies that drivers with five nanograms of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in their blood can be prosecuted for driving under the influence. Arrests are based on individual officer observations. Opponents of the current rules argue that people who use marijuana regularly will have illegal THC levels in their blood long after the drug’s intoxicating effects wear off.