Ohio's Drugged Driving Law

Learn about the laws and penalties for driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) in Ohio.

Ohio’s drugged driving law is located at Ohio Revised Code Section 4511.19 . The law states that no person shall operate any vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, a drug of abuse, or a combination of them. In addition, no person shall operate a vehicle with the following drug concentrations:

drug

urine/nanograms

blood/nanograms

amphetamine

500

100

cocaine

50

50

heroin

2,000

50

L.S.D.

25

10

Marihuana

10

2

Ohio has what is known as a per se (also known as a “zero tolerance”) prohibition against drugged driving if the driver, while driving, has specific amounts of certain controlled substances in his or her body. That means that a driver may be arrested if the police officer has a reasonable suspicion that the driver is operating the vehicle with such concentrations. Other than the per se/zero tolerance rule, an arrest can be triggered by a driver impaired by drugs.

What drugs are prohibited?

Ohio’s drugged driving law is directed at the prohibition of any “drug of abuse” along with specifically named drugs and their concentrations. A listing of controlled substances regulated by federal law are found at the Drug Enforcement Administration website.

What happens if a driver is convicted of drug impaired driving in Ohio?

A driver arrested for drugged driving in Ohio will be charged with driving under the influence and subject to DUI penalties. A conviction for drugged driving will be considered as a prior offense for purposes of calculating punishment regardless of whether a subsequent offense is due to alcohol or drugs. Read more about Ohio’s DUI laws.

Do Ohio drivers have to submit to drug testing?

Yes, there is an implied consent rule for blood and urine testing. The refusal to take the test can be admitted into evidence against the driver.

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