Tag Archives: Denver

Bicycling Can’t be Safe with Stoned Drivers on the Road

The Richard Tom Foundation honors a bicyclist who was killed by a stoned driver on April 26, 2015, in a double fatal crash.   A homepage for the foundation says “supporting the safety and adventure of cycling for all.”   The driver had 36 nanograms of THC in his system, but it’s hard to get across how dangerous stoned driving is while marijuana proponents advocate for legalization.  (The crash was in Vermont, where legislators decided against legalizing pot this year.)

The number of  bicyclists hit and killed by stoned drivers, or critically injured, is growing.  Of course it happens most frequently where marijuana is legalized or where there is medical marijuana.  Congressman Earl Blumenauer is a big advocate for bicycling, a healthy activity at odds with the marijuana businesses he supports.

Last December, a stoned driver hit and killed Martin Greenough in Portland, Oregon.  The man’s family is now suing Portland and the state of Oregon.

Blumenauer4
Rep. Earl Blumenauer, Portland, is a great supporter of bicycling. However, advocating for marijuana puts  bicyclists in grave danger.

There were at least two fatal bicycling accidents in the Portland area involving impaired drivers this spring.  Articles mention that the drivers were under influence but don’t reveal what substances caused the impairment.   Stoned drivers are more common in the day while drunk drivers are usually out in the dark.

Kalamazoo, Michigan, June 7

The driver who killed five bicyclists near near Kalamazoo, Michigan on June 6, was high on drugs, legal drugs according to the prosecutors.  It may have been “medical” marijuana which is legal in Michigan.   Four more bicyclists were injured.   MADD warns that “drugged” driving will overtake drunk driving as a cause of accidents by 2020.  Marijuana is the most common drug found with drugged drivers.

Boulder County, Colorado, May 20

In Longmont, CO, a 20-year old driver under the influence of pot killed an 8-year-old girl riding her bike on May 20. She was coming back from school, accompanied by stepdad.

peyton.knowlton.gofundme
The driver who killed Peyton Knowlton, 8, was high on marijuana.   She was riding her bike.

Boulder, Colorado, May 7

Teen Accused Of Being Stoned In Crash That Killed Boulder Couple

Stacy Reynolds and Joe Ramos were much beloved in the community and mourned after their death.  A stoned 17-year-old without a criminal record was driving home from smoking pot with friends.

Morris, Illinois, June 22

The a baggie thrown out to the car that killed bicyclists Janice and Mark Wendling tested positive for marijuana.  The 17-year-old driver said he had used marijuana 2 days earlier.    The driver was a former student of math teacher Janice Wendling.

Salt Lake City, Utah

A driver hit bicyclist while under influence of marijuana, causing critical injuries.

Berkeley, California, February 17

In Berkeley, California, a terrible crash happened when a driver had just come from a medical marijuana dispensary.  The woman was dragged and badly injured but she survived.   It should be mentioned that Berkeley gives out marijuana to homeless residents, a program which makes it more difficult for them to get back on their feet.

Bike lane opens in Berkeley by near-fatal crash site; charges filed against driver, who police say was high

California’s Proposition 64 is called the Adult Use of Marijuana Act.  Anyone who believes that legalizing marijuana will keep it out of the hands of teenagers is nuts.   At least three of these fatal crashes were caused by 17-year-old drivers.  Sanctioning adult use of the substance means the children will use it more often and think it’s harmless.

Stoned and Drunk is a Deadly Combination

It’s Not Either Or — Many Drivers are Both Stoned and Drunk

Read Part 1  For Ansley Rayborn, 14, it was a fatal decision to go into the car with another teenager who had been drinking and smoking pot.  Ansley was a freshman at Chiles High School in Florida.   She was spending the night at a friend’s house when the two girls met up with other kids.  The 15-year-old driver was stoned, drunk and only had a learner’s permit.  Ansley died while the driver and three other teens escaped from the crash with minor injuries. Continue reading Stoned and Drunk is a Deadly Combination

Is the Marijuana Industry Trying to Grow, Stifle the Facts?

The Colorado Board of Education may discontinue the Colorado Healthy Kids survey, because of privacy concerns.  The survey,  a means to track substance abuse, is scheduled to come out this year.  Since 2009, it has been coming out in odd-numbered years.   Losing this survey would mean the state would no way of measuring youth trends from a statewide/regional perspective.

The next Colorado Healthy Kids survey might show how strongly the marijuana industry is having an influence on Colorado’s children.  If the state doesn’t keep the survey, how can it judge what the legal recreational marijuana program is doing to its school children?   The national survey showed that youth usage in Colorado went up sharply 5-10 years ago, during the period of medical marijuana expansion, while it remained rather flat nationwide. (see chart below) Continue reading Is the Marijuana Industry Trying to Grow, Stifle the Facts?

Crime Goes Up in Colorado Following Legalization

Today the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Tracking Authority (RMHIDTA) issued a Press Release.  The report counters much of the drug lobbying group’s “spin” on marijuana.

Spin: Drug Policy Alliance’s recent Status Report: Marijuana Legalization in Colorado After One Year of Retail Sales [2014] and Two Years of Decriminalization [2013]” claims: “Since the first retail marijuana stores opened on January 1st, 2014, the state of Colorado has benefitted from a decrease in crime rates…”

Truth: According to Denver Police Department’s National Incident Based Reporting System (NIBRS), total reported crimes for all Continue reading Crime Goes Up in Colorado Following Legalization