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Driving Under the Influence of Meth

Meth and driving

I have always wondered about how meth affects someone's ability to operate a car safely. Is it like drinking and driving. I know this may be a stupid question, but I just don't know.

Re: Meth and driving

I don't know how my driving was when I was doing it, but I felt like I drove fine, but who knows. The only problem I had was what I was seeing when I was driving....like I was always seeing something out of the corner of my eye so I was constantly looking everywhere during my drive.

I didn't drive fast, I was usually under the speed limit and had to speed up, which seems kind of backwards to me.

Sfj Re: Meth and driving

I’m sure many will disagree with me, but I have not seen any evidence to contradict my opinions.

Driving under the influence of any mind altering substance is not a good idea. It should be avoided. Driving while going without sleep should be avoided. Sleep renews and refreshes a person and helps the senses to be more naturally alert and sharp.

That said, the notion of artificial stimulation has some merit. I’ve gone for five years doing meth on a daily basis, sleeping only a few hours daily on average. Riding a motorcycle most of the time, but also driving a car to work, across country and many miles of freeway and in-city driving. Zero accidents and only three or four speeding tickets.

Meth is a stimulant. It makes the person much more alert and increases his reflexes and response time. That is if he is properly rested which is often not the case but sometimes is.

If you will look on Doug's site, you will see that the US govt. gives speed to pilots to make them more alert.

A drunk driver is infinitely more dangerous than a tweaker in my opinion.

Re: Meth and driving

My son Kevin was arrested while fleeing and eluding, driving stolen BMW on the WRONG way of the freeway in San Diego - he stopped only when he eyeballed the cop pointing the gun at him - Kevin was backing out of a dead-end street -

Does that answer your question?

Sfj Re: Meth and driving

Not really.

It doesn't answer the question about meth use.

Was Kevin using meth, or was he drinking, or neither, or both?

Does my story or your story make an exception to the rule or does it support the rule?

Re: Meth and driving

My son's counselor said if he drove behind the wheel while on meth he was liable to kill himself or someone else. This counselor is a former deputy who now runs an outreach program for troubled teens. He has two sons who are former users.... one has been clean for years and is now a deputy himself. The other has been thru rehab and still struggles and uses.

Last week meth was the cause of a multi-car accident with injuries and death.

We will make our son's truck payments until he graduates from his in-house rehab program and is successful thru sober living. Otherwise, we cut off all lifelines. Yesterday he attempted to leave the rehab program. We reminded him of our contract and today he realizes that yesterday was "just a bad day." Who knows what tomorrow will bring but are trusting God. I say take the car keys away.

Re: Meth and driving

Thank you all for all your answers and info on this subject. While I do realize that meth addicts will act out in strange and crazy ways, I was never quite sure how meth actually affects their alertnes, reflexes, and response time. Thanks again.

Ol Ma
Re: Meth and driving

Anything that alters perception is something to be avoided while driving. Period.

The concept that short term sanctioned use, and by short term I mean one time in XX number of hours or days does not fit with the concept of people using perception altering substances on a regular basis.

People driving under the influence of alcohol are often cited as being a leading cause of accidents, high speeds etc. Yet I can cite instances of persons drinking to excess and driving too slowly, too cautiously to be considered safe for other drivers.

Yet the evidence of numbers of DUIs state differently than my personal observations.

DUI means driving under the influence...doesn't say of what, just under the influence. We assume alcohol in most instances.

This question has been presented previous to this thread, perhaps some specifics would be in order...how much use, term of use, how many hours awake, mental condition prior to use etc...

I for one have seen too many accidents and the destruction they cause to be comfortable with the idea of anyone sharing the highways with the people I know and love while under the influence of ANY substance at all.

Re: Meth and driving

He was on meth - after partying all nite -

So you think he was sharp and alert and thinking he could get away that way? He was bright enough (he told me) to stick to roadsides, not driving into incoming cars...... who knows?.......

The only reason he got caught is that there was a lowjack on the car - Kevin's been locked up so long he's in arrears as far as new technology is concerned....or maybe not......for sure he knows a lot after being locked up for so long.....

He writes now he'll never take anything that does not belong to him.......I'm going with the flow....

Now, you and motorcycles and meth? Oh SFJ, that had to be dangerous......

I see young guys going 90 on bikes and I always say, if your mother could only see you now......

shicks Re: Meth and driving

If I have been up for a few days-driving scares me-it's like the car is moving faster than it really is and that ohter cars seem closer than they really are. I really freaked out one time on a 6 lane hwy in Atlanta-I thought I was going to die and kill a ton of people with me.Driving on meth is NOT a good idea.

Sfj Re: Meth and driving

I agree, that's what I said in my original reply. But even more relevant is the notion that meth should not be misused at all, driving or not.

Nevertheless, if someone has had a proper amount of rest, driving while intoxicated on liquor is far more dangerous than driving while spun.

They are both dangerous, one is more dangerous. IMHO

Re: Meth and driving

i think it depends on the users state of mind. i think it becomes unsafe if the user is hallucinating or paranoid. from what i hear though other than that they are usually more alert. and i would think that might acually make them better drivers. but then again i dont use so what do i know.

Re: Meth and driving

Here's something that happens to me. While driving under the influence of meth I would say I'm very carefull. Lets say a cop car is behind me. What happens to me is a brief period of calm, followed by intense focus on every little aspect of driving. The interior of the car and everyone in it dissapears. When the cop car is gone, relief pervails and then back to very careful with touches of anxiety because I'm still amped up and cannot extinguish my relief at not getting pulled over. For a period of time when I'm abstinent and my body has recovered, I'll get over confident and drive like an a-hole. I'll drive risky because I suppose I'm compensating and normal in perspective is dull without the 'thrill'.

Re: Meth and driving

I got into a $4000.00 accident when I was driving high. Too busy tweaking to drive or something.

There were many times that I knew I shouldn't be driving because I was too high. If my boyfriend (at the time) was with me, I would ask him how he was feeling and then tell him that he needed to drive, because I was unable to handle the responsibility and would be a danger to myself and others.

Re: Meth and driving

Thank you all again for the information and for sharing your stories. Just wanted to clear up that I'm not looking for reasons to make it ok to do meth and drive or to be under the influence of any mind altering drug and drive, including alcohol. My father is an alcoholic and has had his license suspended permanently and I couldn't be happier about that!!
The reason why I posted the question is because I was wondering why my son did not want his drivers license back for about 4 years. He had several opportunities to get it back, but never showed any interest in it. So now that he finally got it back because he was trying to start a life without drugs, he received a speeding ticket(which he just ignored) within the first two months of driving and wrecked his company's work truck in the third month. He side swiped a brick mail box and no one was hurt, but it totaled that little truck. He left the the accident scene and disappeared for several days until I finally found him at his "buddy's" house. He told me that he had nodded of while driving and that's how the accident happened, wouldn't that be hard to do while under the influence of meth?? But I guess if he was tired because he has been up for days and was coming down off the drug, it would still be under the influence of meth?

Sfj Re: Meth and driving

One of the biggest problems with meth use is that it must stop.

What goes up, must come down.

Coming down is often as dangerous or even more dangerous than getting high.

Stopping a drug can be extremely dangerous.

Alcoholics and heroin addicts are especially at risk.
Meth users may inadvertantly fall asleep and so on.

Be careful about suggesting cold turkey withdrawal.

Better yet, don't get high in the first place.

Re: Meth and driving

<<He told me that he had nodded of while driving and that's how the accident happened, wouldn't that be hard to do while under the influence of meth?? But I guess if he was tired because he has been up for days and was coming down off the drug, it would still be under the influence of meth??? >>

There was incident here (in Australia) a few years back involving a long distance truck driver who'd been using speed to stay awake for the two day cross-country run. About a kilometre from his destination in the city, he was heading down a big hill towards a busy intersection on a major highway.

Just 'nodded off' and his massive semi trailer truck ploughed through a Mercedes filled with half a dozen people sitting stationary at the red light and then on into the traffic turning across the intersection. I can't rehow many were killed but it was not pretty.

If you check out any sites relating to amphetamine use with vehicles or machinery in the workplace, you will find information warning against effects on impaired judgement, inaccurate risk assessment, effects of sleep deprivation etc.

With your son's recent driving record, sounds like it's time to 'trust you gut' on the causes.

I hope he IS staying clean

Re: Meth and driving

driving on meth isnt the best idea but isnt like drinking and driving in my experience. but its a matter of level of intoxication too. The few times I drove *really* spun I didnt drive well at all, all I could think about was how the grip of my hands felt on the wheel... and how they wernt quite symetrical... oops, moved the left, now I have to move the right one, wait, am I swerving? Yeah, that was bad. Mostly though I drove fine... never been in an accident and never got pulled over....except once... but yeah, thats another story. The danger I mostly hear is about people passing out at the wheel.... I know serveral people who have fallen dead asleep in intersections. "well, uhh, I was coming down so I had to drive across town to get some... I'd been up five days... but.... well, I had to get some..." Yeah, thats more dangerous in my experience but like Ma said, anything that alters your perceptions cant be good when you're controling the speed and direction of a few thousand pounds of steel.

See also:

What does a meth buzz feel like?

Odd behavior when you're high on Meth

Stages of the Meth High

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