A growing opioid crisis and marijuana decriminalization has led to a surge in drivers impaired by drugs in North Carolina and around the country, and the National Transportation Safety Board says that regulators should respond to the problem by providing more assistance to states and drafting standards for roadside drug testing devices. The NTSB asked the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to take these steps in an Oct. 16 statement that was prompted by the investigation into an accident in Texas involving a drug-impaired driver that claimed 13 lives in 2017.
Drivers often worry about being pulled over by a police officer. This can be even more daunting for a person who was out having a few drinks.
In North Carolina, there are five levels of misdemeanor DUI charges in addition to a felony DUI charge. A level one is the most serious misdemeanor while a level five is considered to be the least serious. If a person has three convictions within seven years, the next charge will be a felony, and it comes with a mandatory year in prison if convicted. In addition, an individual must complete a substance abuse program while in jail or on parole.
A bill in North Carolina may have an impact on those who have been charged with marijuana in the past. It could also make it harder for people to be charged with that crime in the future. According to a 2017 poll from Elon University, 80 percent of respondents would be in favor of medical marijuana. Furthermore, 45 percent would vote to make it legal for recreational use.