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Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Cedric Stephens | Plugging the data hole on ganja threat to street security | Enterprise

The Common Meeting of the United Nations mandated the World Well being Group and the UN’s regional commissions to plan and host periodic UN World Street Security Week occasions.

These ‘weeks’ have been held since 2007. The programme goals to advocate making a 30-kilometre per hour pace restrict the norm for cities worldwide in locations the place folks combine with visitors.

This was information to me. It defined the caption to the photograph that was printed on this newspaper on Might 19. 5 individuals, together with, oddly, the boss of a taxi foyer group, had been proven holding indicators with the quantity 30 on the busy Hope, Trafalgar, and Waterloo Street intersection in St Andrew. After I noticed the discover in regards to the Nationwide Street Security Council’s webinar on the identical topic, the penny out of the blue dropped.

The opposite set off for right now’s article was a full-page commercial in the identical newspaper. It was sponsored by the Ministry of Well being & Wellness and the Nationwide Council on Drug Abuse. Its title: Good ganja sense. The advert, the second in a collection, highlighted usually phrases the pluses related to the usage of medicinal hashish for sure situations and the potential financial advantages. They led me to seek for details about the minuses related to the usage of ‘the herb’. Did the pluses outweigh the minuses or vice versa? Did dependable data exist that advised a hyperlink between the smoking of ganja and motorcar accidents?

Many individuals on the streets, together with drivers, consider that the advantages outweigh the dangers. Do motor insurers have information that counsel in any other case?

This newspaper produced a bounty of knowledge that highlights the driving dangers. The article ‘Driving beneath the affect – smoking ganja could possibly be a significant component in main accidents, fatalities’, printed on July 9, 2016, citing one in every of the nation’s main psychiatrists, Professor Wendel Abel, is one instance. A psychiatrist is a medical physician who specialises in psychological well being, together with substance-use problems. Specialists on this discipline are certified to evaluate each the psychological and bodily features of psychological issues.

“We’re fairly involved about driving beneath the affect of any mind-altering substance, be it alcohol or marijuana, particularly given the alarming variety of street fatalities and excessive accident charge,” Abel was reported to have mentioned. His assertion didn’t point out individuals who consumed each substances on the identical time and operated motor automobiles. “There isn’t a doubt that smoking marijuana does have an effect on motor coordination, response time, distance notion, and so forth … ,” he mentioned.

Large development websites round Kingston and St Andrew with out exception ban ganja smoking. The US Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention additionally help Prof Abel’s conclusions. Medication and alcohol intervene with the mind’s capability to perform correctly. Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, which is the primary energetic ingredient in ganja, impacts areas of the mind that management the physique’s actions, steadiness, coordination, reminiscence, and judgement.

Different information obtained from the Gleaner article included the next:

• The Jamaica Well being and Way of life Survey 2008 discovered that 13.5 per cent of the inhabitants within the 15–74-year age group used marijuana. With the decriminalisation of the usage of ganja for leisure use, extra individuals are prone to be smoking ganja in 2021 than in 2008;

• By the age of 16 years, 19 per cent of Jamaican people who smoke had initiated smoking;

• Based on the Nationwide Secondary College Survey 2013, alcohol, marijuana, and cigarette use had been increased amongst 15 to 16-year-olds;

• 30.8 per cent of Jamaican college students report that medication had been out there at their colleges; twice that quantity mentioned it was out there close to their faculty;

• Based on the Nationwide Council on Drug Abuse, between 2006 and 2011, 47 per cent of individuals admitted for therapy and rehabilitation had been for points related to ganja use;

• Over 95 per cent of adolescents referred to NCDA by colleges or households had been for marijuana use.

Is extra up-to-date data on this topic out there? Amendments had been made to the previous and new Street Site visitors Acts to empower the police to check individuals who had been suspected of driving beneath the affect alcohol or medication. Is testing being completed as a part of a broader technique to scale back the carnage on our roads?

Philip Paulwell, opposition spokesman on vitality, in accordance with the April 28 Gleaner, informed members of the Home “that authorized prospects of the JPS had been paying an estimated 17.5 per cent of payments to defray prices related to electrical energy theft”. Within the motor insurance coverage market, are ganja people who smoke inflicting extra motorcar accidents than non-ganja people who smoke? In that case, are non-ganja people who smoke subsidising the price of motor insurance coverage for ganja people who smoke, and by how a lot?

Lowering the pace restrict to 30 kilometres per hour won’t be ample to save lots of lives. Having a greater understanding about drivers’ use of ganja and alcohol and growing methods to vary their behaviour can also be necessary.

Last phrase: A information report from CNN on Friday said that the primary tropical storm system for the 2021 hurricane season is prone to kind this weekend. It jogged my memory of the considerations that had been raised final Sunday about what was taking place within the island’s catastrophe administration company, the ODPEM.

– Cedric E. Stephens supplies impartial data and recommendation in regards to the administration of dangers and insurance coverage. At no cost data or counsel, write to aegis@flowja.com.

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