New data shows 1 in 5 Canadians have recently driven high or with someone who was.
In an attempt to convince Canadians not to drive after eating a marijuana edible, officials took a left turn by making some jokes. The Canadian Automobile Association released a new set of comedic public service announcement videos warning the dangers of being behind the wheel. According to the organization, one in five Canadian say they have driven high or rode in the car of someone who was.
Many consumers still don’t recognize just how high edibles will get them. A 2019 study of Canadians ages 16 to 30 found less than 10% could correctly gage the potency of an edible, based on packaging. Starting with New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd in 2014, numerous folks have shared experiences where an edible hit them harder than expected.
CAA polling data suggests a strong number of consumers still don’t connect edibles with dangerous driving. The organization found 50% of Canadians assume it’s safe to drive less than five hours after consuming an edible. However, a 2018 CAA-funded study found drivers were more at-risk of a car accident five hours after consuming cannabis.
But the CAA doesn’t want to shame young Canadians for eating edibles and getting high—they just don’t want them to drive. Each of the new videos depict a situation where someone finds themselves paranoid, euphoric, or generally goofy after eating an edible.
“If you do edibles, do anything but drive,” reads the ad campaign tagline.
This series isn’t the first humorous attempt to dissuade high driving by Canadian officials. Last year, the Ontario government ran a similarly themed campaign called “Barely high is still too high to drive.” In those videos, young adults were seen enjoying themselves while “barely high” through eating, dancing, or rubbing their toes in shag carpet.
Numbers show Americans may also benefit from such a campaign. Nearly 15 million Americans drove a car within an hour of smoking marijuana in the last 30 days, an AAA study reported last year. Another poll found more than 50% of cannabis users felt comfortable driving with someone characterized as “stoned.”