When DUI (driving under the influence) or DWI (driving while intoxicated) is mentioned, what do you think about? If you are like most of us, you probably think of a person who drinks and drives. A drunk driver is who probably comes to mind.
Did you know or realize that these terms DUI, DWI can also refer to driving under the influence of either prescription or illegal drugs? It is true. These terms can and do refer to anyone who is driving under the influence of (impaired by) prescription or illegal drugs, as well as alcohol.
Anyone who drives a motor vehicle after or while using psychoactive drugs is a continuing concern for authorities.
The thing that concerns authorities is the effect that a drug or drugs will have on you when you are driving. When you drive under the influence of any drug that affects your brain, your motor skills, judgment and reaction time may all be affected and impaired.
Drugs that affect your brain can alter your perception, attention, coordination, reaction time, cognition, balance and other faculties that are needed for safe driving. The effects of specific drugs of abuse are different. They depend on the history of the user, the amount consumed, their mechanisms of action and other factors.
Driving under the influence of drugs is a public health concern because of those that it puts at risk. It is not only the driver, but passengers and others who share the road are also at risk from the driver who is under the influence of drugs.
Marijuana is the illegal drug that is used more than any other while driving or followed by driving a motor vehicle. It is the illegal drug that is most often identified in fatally injured drivers, impaired drivers and motor vehicle crash victims.
Rohypnol is another drug that can impair and affect your driving. Rohypnol is a short-acting benzodiazepine. The general properties of Rohypnol are similar to those of Valium. Rohypnol has different uses. It is used as a pre-medication in surgical procedures, in the short-term treatment of insomnia, and for inducing anesthesia.
Like other benzodiazepines (such as Valium, Librium and Xanax), the effects of Rohypnol include reduction in anxiety, sedation, prevention of convulsions and muscle relaxation. However, these sedative effects are approximately 7 to 10 times stronger than Valium. The effects of Rohypnol begin 15 to 20 minutes after administration and last approximately four to six hours. Some residual effects can be found 12 hours or more after administration.
Rohypnol has never been approved for medical use in the United States. As a result, pharmacists cannot sell Rohypnol, and doctors are not allowed to prescribe it.
However, it can be legally prescribed in over 50 other countries. Rohypnol is widely available in Europe, Colombia and Mexico. In these places it is used as a pre-anesthetic and for the treatment of insomnia.
For this reason, Rohypnol was placed into Schedule IV of the Controlled Substances Act in 1984, where it remains under that classification. This was due to international treaty obligations.
Rohypnol is administered in tablet form. However, it can easily be ground down into powder and put into a drink. Because of this and the effect of partial amnesia that it causes, Rohypnol has been referred to as the date-rape drug, as mentioned above.
Rohypnol has several other names by which it is known. Some of these street names are roofies, date-rape drug, R2, rib, roach, rope, ruffies, La Roche, roofenol and rophies.
Some of the effects of Rohypnol can impair or affect the driving of a motor vehicle. Some of these include:
Loss of motion control
Loss of coordination
Problems with respiration
Problems with your stomach
As listed above, using Rohypnol can have serious side effects. These side effects can impair or affect you as you drive. Because of this, it is extremely dangerous to drive after taking Rohypnol.
You may have been arrested for DUI (driving under the influence) because of driving after ingesting Rohypnol. If you have been charged with DUI because of Rohypnol and driving, you are in a serious situation.
Most people who are arrested for DUI after ingesting Rohypnol have no knowledge that they took the drug. It was most likely slipped into a drink they left unattended at a bar, club or restaurant. To make matters worse, it is unlikely that you will be tested for this drug as a result of a DUI arrest.
DUI charges and penalties are no laughing matter. If you are the victim of someone slipping you the date-rape drug and have been arrested for DUI, you need a skilled DUI attorney to help you avoid jail time.