Reporter Gets High, Drives With Cops (for Science)

Ahead of Prop. 19, writer explores driving stoned
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 21, 2010 5:00 AM CDT
Marijuana for sale at the San Francisco Medical Cannabis Clinic.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
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(Newser) – While out on a marijuana driving test supervised by the LAPD, Steve Lopez and his companions speculate that "probably nowhere in America is what we're doing today occurring." They're probably right. With Proposition 19 making legal marijuana a possibility, Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen Trutanich asked Lopez to get stoned, drive, and have his performance evaluated by police officers. Lopez writes about his experience in the LA Times.

So what happened? After smoking a fat blunt of a strain called "Train Wreck," Lopez went through slalom, parking, and traffic challenges. "It didn't seem to me that I was as impaired as I would have been after a few beers or glasses of wine." Lopez writes. But he concluded that while he wasn't uncoordinated, thinking quickly while stoned was an issue. "I thought I could drive pretty well, but getting through the traffic signal was another matter. Having to process a lot of information and make a quick decision on Train Wreck was a challenge."

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