Police Warn Against Driving While High - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Police Warn Against Driving While High

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Police are gearing up for a busy holiday weekend, with large crowds ringing in the new year in Downtown Reno. This will be the first time Nevada will celebrate New Year's Eve after recreational marijuana was legalized. 

Police are reminding community members that, just as with driving under the influence of alcohol or any other substance, driving while high has always been illegal and remains that way. Officer Tim Broadway with the Reno Police Department emphasized, "It is not legal to drive even with prescription marijuana."

Nevada law specifies that drivers with two nanograms of marijuana's active ingredient, THC, implies a DUI. However, officers base their arrests off of observed impairment, like erratic driving and will conduct field sobriety tests.  

Those arrested for DUI will be required to submit to a blood test. The penalties can be just as severe as driving drunk, coming in with a hefty price tag of six to ten thousand dollars--and that's just for first-time offenders. 

So, while it is legal to possess the plant, Broadway says it's legal to have one ounce of marijuana on your possession, keep in mind you can only consume it at a private residence. Consumption is illegal in your car, a casino, a club, on the street, or anywhere in public.

Officer Broadway says there will be an increased presence of DUI enforcement officers over the weekend, "We're also going to be on the lookout for open containers but also those individuals who are violating Nevada state law--consuming marijuana out in public."

Instead of driving under the influence, call a cab, use a rideshare, or have a designated driver. You can also use a free service like Triple A's Holiday Safe Ride Program or RTC's New Year's Eve Free Safe Ride. 

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