The Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) is pushing a new public education campaign to discourage young Canadian’s against driving after ingesting marijuana edibles. Do Anything But Drive is the name of the campaign. The message is simple, and reflects the name exactly. Please do anything but drive.
The campaign was launched Canada wide on September 14 in both English and French language videos. The video takes a light-hearted approach to the paranoia under the influence of marijuana edibles. It shows the variety of options available to young adults including a designated drive, rideshare, taxi, staying over, binge watch, and cleaning. Quite simply. “If you do edibles, do anything but drive.”
Why target marijuana edibles?
Jeff Walker, President and CEO, CAA North & East Ontario says the message of the ad is quite simple: if you are consuming a cannabis edible, then do not – under any circumstances – consider getting behind the wheel”. Jeff says, “there is no gray area of room for debate. Cannabis edibles stay in your system longer and can produce some really varied reactions that can be skewed by a multitude of factors, including how much food is in your stomach”. He continues, “cannabis consumption delays your reaction time, putting yourself and others on the road at greater risk for collisions which can be deadly, while cannabis edibles can produce stronger, different and longer reactions. It’s simply not safe to drive after consuming them.”
How many young adults are driving with marijuana edibles?
Many young Canadian’s under estimate the dangers and strength of some marijuana edibles and still continue to get behind the wheel impaired. Researched conducted from CAA shows that 1/5 (20%) of young adults defined from the age range of 18-24, admit to driving high, or being in the vehicle with a driver that is high. A further CAA poll showed that 1/2 (50%) of young adult’s believe it is safe to drive less than 5 hours after consuming marijuana edibles.
Public health authorities have warned that edibles can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours before effects start to feel the full impact. Cannabis edibles can also stay in the blood stream and system for up to 12 hours. It is therefore crucial with this length of time to plan ahead. Much the same way it is to plan ahead before a night of drinking out with friends.
Canada has legalized edibles last fall. Clearly there is a lot of work to be done educating all Canadians, but especially young Canadian adults. There are a lot of risks when not planning an appropriate ride home. CAA has aimed this campaign similar to the “arrive alive DRIVE SOBER” campaign many Canadians are familiar with. Their mission parallels CAA’s. Again, it is quite simple: to provide leadership and programs to eliminate impaired driving, and enable people and communities to share resources and information that will prevent injuries and save lives.
Drinking, or ingesting cannabis edibles, using prescription drugs, or taking anything that intoxicates the driver is a recipe for disaster. Steps should always be taken before hand ensuring success. Planning ahead is a sure method if preventing “getting caught” in a position where young adults might feel like they are okay to drive.
The researched mentioned above comes from a poll of 2824 Canadians that was conducted between Jun 5 to 16 of 2020. With the sample, the margin of error is predicted to be +/- 1.84%, 19 out of 20 times.
For further comment, or to book an interview with CAA North & East Ontario president and CEO Jeff Walker, please contact:
Communications and Public Relations Specialist,
CAA North & East Ontario
Source: CAA North & East Ontario