Here’s What You Need to Know About Driving While High Laws in Prescott, AZ
This post is part of our Best Dispensaries in Arizona series, brought to you by SWC Arizona.
Here’s What You Need to Know About the Driving While High Laws in Prescott, AZ
Even though marijuana usage is legal in Arizona, driving while high is still a crime. Think of it just like drinking and driving. Alcohol is legal, but you can’t drive while under its influence.
If you don’t live in the state, you might even ask, “is marijuana legal in Arizona?” Thanks to a recent ballot measure, the answer is yes. However, driving while impaired by the substance is covered by similar laws to driving while drunk.
Here’s what you need to know about driving while high in Prescott, Arizona.
Table of Contents
- Is Driving High on Cannabis a DUI in Prescott, Arizona?
- Signs of Marijuana DUI Impairment
- What Can Influence a Marijuana DUI Conviction in Prescott, AZ?
- Which Tests Can Prove Weed DUI?
- Are Marijuana DUI Chemical Tests Reliable?
- Can You Refuse a Chemical Test for Cannabis DUI in AZ?
- Types of Marijuana DUI in Arizona
- Does Cannabis Impact Your Driving Ability the Same Way as Alcohol?
- How to Avoid a Marijuana DUI in Arizona?
- Best Marijuana Dispensaries in Prescott, AZ
- Don’t Want to Get a Weed DUI in Arizona? Don’t Drive High!
Is Driving High on Cannabis a DUI in Prescott, Arizona?
Even though marijuana is technically legal in Arizona, it’s still a crime in the state to drive while under the influence of the substance. More than that, Arizona has a zero-tolerance law for driving while high in general.
So if you’re asking, “Can you get a DUI from weed” in Arizona, the answer is very much yes. With that in mind, here are some other details you should know.
Signs of Marijuana DUI Impairment
When a cop pulls you over for suspicious driving, it’s clear that they will be on the lookout for any behavior to confirm that hunch. In other words, police officers will be searching for signs of marijuana DUI impairment.
This can include the smell of cannabis in your vehicle, red eyes, delayed reaction time or an overall “air” of relaxation, and other side effects of marijuana use.
What Can Influence a Marijuana DUI Conviction in Prescott, AZ?
In general, the surefire way to convict someone of driving while high in Prescott, Arizona, is to use a marijuana drug test. If you were pulled over for a potential DUI, police would be eager to make you take the test to confirm their suspicions.
Arizona has some strict laws when it comes to DUI drug testing. For example, it’s illegal for someone to drive with marijuana or cannabis metabolites in their system. These metabolites can stay in your system for weeks after you use marijuana — even if you haven’t consumed it in a while.
Which Tests Can Prove Weed DUI?
Generally, police will use two types of tests to measure sobriety. One of them is a field sobriety test. Think of making a drunk driver stand on one foot or perform another maneuver. This type of test won’t offer hard and fast evidence of cannabis use, however.
The much more reliable test is the aforementioned drug test. In this case, police will have your blood tested for signs of cannabis or its metabolites. If your blood sample returns positive for those items, then there’s a good chance you could be facing a conviction.
Are Marijuana DUI Chemical Tests Reliable?
As mentioned earlier, marijuana metabolites can stay in your system for quite some time after usage. Because of this, the tests aren’t a very reliable way to prove that someone is currently high.
A positive blood sample, combined with a failure in your field sobriety test and suspicious or reckless driving, could be enough evidence to convict you.
Can You Refuse a Chemical Test for Cannabis DUI in AZ?
Yes, you can. These types of chemical blood tests require your consent. However, it’s worth noting that refusing to take a chemical test can result in the immediate suspension of your driver license for at least 12 months.
There’s a chance you can inadvertently refuse the test, too. According to Arizona state law, any failure of a person to explicitly agree or complete the test is considered a refusal.
Types of Marijuana DUI in Arizona
Worried about a DUI weed charge in Arizona? You should know that there are two distinct types of marijuana DUI in the state: “Impaired to the Slightest Degree” and “Drug DUI.”
The first DUI law prohibits people from driving with any substance that impairs them to the “slightest degree.” No matter how small the amount of drug in your system, you can be charged if you’re impaired even slightly. The other type, a drug DUI, is similar except that prosecutors won’t need to show impairment — just evidence that you were driving with marijuana in your system.
Penalties & Fines for Cannabis DUI Charges in Prescott, Arizona
If you get charged with a drug DUI or slightly impaired while driving, you can expect a number of penalties and fines.
On a first offense, you can expect at least 10 days in jail but up to six months, followed by five years of prohibition. There’s also a 90-day suspension of your license and $2,000 in fines and court costs.
If you’re convicted a second time, expect at least 90 days in jail (possibly up to six months), five years of probation, and an ignition interlock device on your vehicle. Your license will be revoked for a year and your court costs and fines could be over $5,000.
Aggravated DUI Charges
An aggravated DUI is more severe than a standard DUI. It’s a felony instead of a misdemeanor. Aggravated DUI charges can be levied if you drive on a suspended license, if there’s a minor younger than 15 in your car, or if this is your third DUI in the past seven years.
A conviction could carry two or more years in prison, a maximum monetary fine of $150,000, and the possibility that your license will be suspended for three years.
Does Cannabis Impact Your Driving Ability the Same Way as Alcohol?
Cannabis doesn’t affect you as alcohol does, but it can still make driving while high dangerous because of delayed reaction times and other factors.
You’re twice as likely to be involved in a motor vehicle crash while high. This isn’t close to the 10 to 15 times while drunk, but it’s still significant.
How to Avoid a Marijuana DUI in Arizona?
The easiest way to avoid being charged with a marijuana DUI is to avoid consuming cannabis before you drive. It’s also helpful if you don’t possess cannabis in your vehicle while driving.
If you do consume cannabis before driving, it’s important to let the impairment wear off before doing so. This is why it’s so important to only purchase your marijuana products from a reputable dispensary with high-quality cannabis. That way, you know exactly how strong the bud is.
Best Marijuana Dispensaries in Prescott, AZ
There are many excellent dispensaries near Prescott, AZ, including the following:
This top-tier dispensary stocks only the highest-quality product, from vape pens to flower. Yet, it still manages to offer great everyday pricing and excellent deals. More than that, the staff at SWC Arizona are friendly, compassionate, and extremely knowledgeable.
A good option among marijuana dispensaries in Prescott, it has good prices and friendly staff. Expect good strains, a wide range of options, and great customer service here.
203 Organix is a great dispensary with excellent deals. The staff is well-versed about the shop’s various products, so you can expect them to know what they’re talking about.
Don’t Want to Get a Weed DUI in Arizona? Don’t Drive High!
If you’ve come to this article with the question, “Is driving high considered DUI,” then we hope that you have enough information to know that the answer is yes.
Because driving while high is unsafe, we recommend that you don’t do it. That’s the easiest way of avoiding any sort of marijuana DUI in Arizona.