Although Oregon allows both recreational and medical use of marijuana, marijuana is still an intoxicant and DUII laws apply to marijuana use just like they apply to alcohol and other intoxicants.
Marijuana DUII charges present unique challenges, because unlike alcohol, there is no specific amount of THC (the principal psychoactive chemical component of marijuana) in the blood, breath, or urine of a driver that is presumed to cause impaired driving. In addition, detectable levels of marijuana may remain in a person’s body for weeks following marijuana use, even after a person is no longer impaired or feeling the effects of marijuana use.
Because there is no specific legal threshold for impairment caused by marijuana, the mere presence of marijuana chemicals in your system or an officer’s suspicion that you recently used marijuana could lead to an arrest and criminal charges for DUII.
To measure impairment caused by marijuana, Oregon officers test a driver for a number of “general indicators” of marijuana/cannabis use, including:
- Very red eyes;
- Odor of marijuana;
- Body tremors;
- Eyelid tremors;
- Relaxed inhibitions;
- Increased appetite;
- Impaired perception of time and distance;
- Possible paranoia; and