Is It Safe to Drive After Consuming Edibles?
Individuals ingesting edibles will need to wait for an amount of time before driving, which differs from when individuals inhale cannabis. Determining when it’s safe to drive is somewhat more challenging with edibles compared to inhaled marijuana, but it generally takes longer for the substance to leave your system when consumed.
How Long to Wait After Eating Edibles
At this time, it’s not entirely clear how long a person needs to wait after ingesting edibles before it’s safe to drive. This is due to several factors uniquely related to edible consumption.
First, edibles affect each person differently and different edibles have different types of effects. The effects of inhaled marijuana tend to last for around six or more hours, while edibles can lead to effects that last as long as 12 hours.
Andrew Murie, the CEO of Mothers Against Drink Driving (MADD) Canada, suggests that people sleep the cannabis off overnight before driving. They may also want to wait even longer, as the after-effects of consumption, such as drowsiness that can contribute to highway hypnosis, can last for up to 24 hours after consumption.
Avoid Driving Even if Effects Aren’t Apparent
It’s generally best for individuals to avoid driving entirely after eating edibles until a day or longer has passed. While the effects of smoking or vaping cannabis typically show within 30 minutes, the effects of edibles can take as long as two hours to begin and four hours to fully affect the user.
Because of these delayed effects, it’s advisable to avoid eating and driving just as one would with any other intoxicating substance. A person could feel fine while initially on the road, only to have the effects kick in while in the middle of driving.
To avoid the potential risks associated with eating and driving, individuals should only consume a small number of edibles to gauge their effects. After consumption, they should avoid driving until the next day.
Potential Legal Repercussions
Even after consuming one or two edibles with seemingly minimal effects, individuals may be over the legal limit when driving. Police may subject potential cannabis users to a saliva or field sobriety test, which could result in a DWI charge.
In general, it’s a good rule of thumb to avoid eating and driving with edibles to prevent vehicle accidents and legal consequences.