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Study Finds CBD Does Not Impair Driving

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A new study has found small doses of CBD have no impact on driving as opposed to small doses of THC.

The study involved participants who inhaled vaporized cannabis with different amounts of THC and CBD then going on a 100-kilometer drive under controlled conditions on public highways, both 40 minutes and four hours after consumption. The study found cannabis with mainly CBD did not impair driving while cannabis containing THC or a THC/CBD mixture caused mild impaired driving after 40 minutes. After four hours signs of impairment were no longer present. Another study has previously claimed frequent cannabis consumers are more dangerous drivers.  

“While some previous studies have looked at the effects of cannabis on driving, most have focused on smoked cannabis containing only THC (not CBD) and have not precisely quantified the duration of impairment,” said Iain McGregor at the University of Sydney’s Lambert Initiative. “This is the first study to illustrate the lack of CBD effects on driving and to also provide a clear indication of the duration of THC impairment.”

The research was funded by the University of Sydney’s Lambert Initiative, which studies the health effects of cannabis and conducted at Maastricht University in the Netherlands. The study enrolled 26 men and women with an average age of 23 years old.

“The implication for the general public is that the cannabis-induced driving impairment should be acknowledged as a public health risk, while taking into account that impairment may differ between cannabis strains and depends on time [elapsed] after use,” said Johannes Ramaekers, PhD, professor of psychopharmacology and behavioral toxicology at Maastricht University.

The study warns that individuals should not assume they are ok to drive after four hours as edible products or higher doses of cannabis could lead to longer periods of impairment.

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