Impaired Driving: Prescription Drugs and Driving
PRESCRIPTION DRUGS & OLDER ADULTS
May cause drowsiness…and danger to others. You can get a DUI for driving under the influence of prescription drugs.In 2014, $374 billion was spent on prescription drugs in the United States, over $1,100 per person. 2/3 of adults age 65 and over take five or more prescription medications that can affect their ability to drive (AAA). Prescription drug-impaired driving can diminish an individual’s performance behind the wheel and pose the risks of harm to a driver or an innocent bystander.
Points to Remember
- Use of illicit drugs or misuse of prescription drugs can make driving a car unsafe - just like driving after drinking alcohol.
- In 2014, 10 million people aged 12 or older reported driving under the influence of illicit drugs in the past year.
- It's hard to measure how many crashes drugged driving causes.
- After alcohol, marijuana is the drug most often linked to drugged driving.
- In 2010, more than one-quarter of drugged drivers in fatal crashes were aged 50 years or older.
- When lack of driving experience is combined with drug use, the results can be tragic.
- People who use drugs and alcohol should develop social strategies to prevent them from getting behind the wheel of a car while impaired.
- 11% had used drugs other than alcohol on the day of their arrest.
- 47% reported using Rx drugs
- 41% reported using marijuana
- 11% reported using cocaine
- Read more about our Call to Action Drug-impaired Driving Campaign
- DrugFacts: Drugged Driving. National Institute on Drug Abuse