Colorado has been enjoying the benefits of legalized marijuana for over a year, with recreational users openly able to appreciate the “Rocky Mountain High” that was formerly out of their reach. In all states, whether marijuana is legal for recreational or medical reasons, DUI laws are enforced if a driver is suspected of being “under the influence” of any substance. In Colorado, that could mean that if you smoke marijuana and are found guilty of a “drugged” DUI, you could still have to install a car breathalyzer or ignition interlock on your vehicle.
Legally, a DUI means that you’re “driving under the influence” of a substance that affects your ability to operate a vehicle safely. In Colorado, the DUI consequences include a license suspension period that can be reduced once an offender qualifies for an ignition interlock. That means that if you are convicted of a drug-related DUI and you plan to reinstate your license early, you’re probably going to have an ignition interlock requirement… even if you’ve never had a sip of alcohol in your life.
Contrary to popular belief, a DUI is a DUI, no matter if you’ve been drinking alcohol or you’re driving under the influence of any type of substance, including marijuana. While so many people are celebrating the reduction or removal of marijuana restrictions in Colorado and across the U.S., anyone who relies on alcohol, marijuana or other substances to relax should remember that the “relaxation” effect of those chemicals can also lead to bad decisions and poor judgment when you’re behind the wheel. Steering clear of a DUI, ignition interlock or other consequences requires very little effort – you just don’t drive if you are under the influence of any substances. That way, your “Rocky Mountain High” stays close to home, just how the legalization laws intend.