Roadside Survey Reveals Increase in Drugged Driving

Decades-long efforts to combat drunk driving continue to be effective at keeping alcohol-impaired drivers off America’s roadways, but the number of drivers who test positive for drugs has risen in recent years, according to results of a recent survey. The latest version of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA’s) Roadside Survey of Alcohol and Drug Use by Drivers found that the percentage of weekend nighttime drivers with breath alcohol content of 0.08 grams per 210 liters of breath or above—at or in excess of the legal limit—had declined by nearly one-third since 2007 and by 80 percent since the first Roadside Survey in 1973. However, the study also found evidence of increased drugged driving. In the 2014 survey, about one-in-four each of weekend nighttime drivers and weekday daytime drivers tested positive for at least one drug (illicit or medication) that could affect highway safety. To read the Research Note, click here.