You can drive under the influence of nitrous oxide?

“Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and lawmakers from across the state gathered in Santa Ana on Wednesday to call attention to a new DUI law inspired by the death of Orange City Councilman Steven Ambriz,” according to the O.C. Register.

“The Steve Ambriz Act attempts to increase the penalty by requiring all Californians applying for or renewing a driver’s license to sign a statement acknowledging the dangers of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.”

That is great, and Ambriz’ death was a terrible tragedy, however my co-blogger Thomas Gordon recently brought something to my attention that I found to be completely astounding. He observed a vehicle commit a hit and run on Tuesday evening, and he followed the vehicle, which finally ended up smashing into a block wall in someone’s yard, narrowly missing a man on a bike.

Gordon called the Santa Ana Police Department, and they showed up. It was obvious, that the perpetrator was under the influence of nitrous oxide, as he had a tank of it, which is used to carry the gas for inhalation.

But the officer told Gordon that it is NOT illegal to drive under the influence of nitrous oxide. Are you kidding me? How has the City of Santa Ana and the State of California allowed that to happen? This is only one of the biggest emerging problems with young people in our area.

Gordon emailed California State Assemblyman Jose Solorio’s office about this on Wednesday morning, but they have yet to respond.

I found this information online, about driving under the influence of nitrous oxide, “The driving skills of 10 dental students were evaluated on three occasions on a driving simulator after exposure to air and 50% and 70% nitrous oxide in oxygen. Errors increased after exposure to nitrous oxide and were statistically significant during the middle of the test period. Driving after short exposure to nitrous oxide appears inadvisable.”

I also found this information online about the primary physiological dangers of nitrous inhalation, which are:

Clearly the California State Legislature needs to get involved in banning the use of Nitrous Oxide while driving, and making it illegal for people under the age of 21 to possess supplies of this gas. Isn’t Assemblyman Jose Solorio on a Legislative Public Safety Committee? Here you go Jose – take this issue and run with it!


About Admin

"Admin" is just editors Vern Nelson, Greg Diamond, or Ryan Cantor sharing something that they mostly didn't write themselves, but think you should see. Before December 2010, "Admin" may have been former blog owner Art Pedroza.