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NHTSA announces summit on drugged driving

The causes of the recent increase in accidents related to drugged driving in Pennsylvania and across the nation aren't clear. Many experts point to the expansion of marijuana legalization in some states. Others believe it may be related to the opioid epidemic. Regardless of the reason, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is issuing a call to action in hopes of limiting resulting fatalities.

The federal agency has an announced a summit to take place on March 15, 2018, with the stated goal of leading the national dialogue on reducing drugged driving. It is the hope of the NHTSA that the summit will use science and data to help address the issue.

The stakeholders attending the summit include state and local law enforcement, policy experts, data analysts, criminal justice professionals, and toxicologists. Some of the topics on the agenda include educating law enforcement and the public about drugged driving, collecting and analyzing drugged driving data, discussing methods and parties to test driver impairment levels, and best practices for enforcing current drugged driving laws.

Some of the most devastating motor vehicle accidents are the result of motorists who are driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. They can cause catastrophic injuries to the impaired driver's passengers as well as to occupants of other vehicles involved in such a collision. The victims often face months and years of expensive medical treatment and care, and many of them are unable to earn a living while they recover. People who are in this position might want to have an attorney attempt to negotiate a settlement with the driver's insurer. If the offer is inadequate, the next step could be a lawsuit.

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