ROSEBURG, Ore. -- State lawmakers are working to expand the definition of drunken driving in Oregon to include other intoxicants like prescription drugs and synthetic substances that mimic drugs.
If passed, a bill currently circulating around in legislature would add prescription medications and other drugs that affect a driver's mental or physical faculties to DUII.
Currently "intoxicants" cover only alcohol, controlled substances and inhalants.
Sgt. Jeff Eichenbusch at the Roseburg Police Department said that there are many people that still drive, even inf their medication impairs their driving ability.
“A lot of people don't understand. They'll take a medication that's been prescribed to them and they'll think they're just fine,” said Sgt. Eichenbusch. “They don't realize there's actually an impairment there.”
Sgt. Eichenbusch also said that some people are not aware they are swerving or driving slowly due to their medications.
If the expansion bill passes, drivers who claim to be reacting adversely to medication would be required to provide medical records to the prosecutor.