UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Crashes on cannabis celebration day Staples, John; Redelmeier, Donald A.


We thank Harper & Palayew for replicating our analysis of traffic risks on April 20.1 2 We agree that the absolute risks on April 20 must be modest because the majority of Americans do not celebrate the ‘high holiday’ and because comparison days are not devoid of impaired driving. Similarly, secular trends in relative risks for April 20 reflect evolving driving norms, fluctuating traffic enforcement, changing baseline rates of cannabis use, variable celebration behaviours and rapid growth of the cannabis industry. We also agree that crashes are already recognised to be more frequent on traditional holidays such as Independence Day and Thanksgiving.3 Beyond this shared understanding, however, we disagree with Harper & Palayew on a key assumption in their analysis.

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