Cannabis component cannabidiol (CBD) does not impair driving and is safe for those behind the wheel, an Australian-led study has found.
CBD has in the past decade been increasingly used for medicinal purposes as an oil extract, and research published by the University of Sydney on Wednesday showed the compound did not affect driving ability.
Tests conducted on a 100-kilometre stretch of highway in the Netherlands showed the use of cannabis containing mostly CBD did not impair driving or prompt swerving, lane-weaving or driver overcorrections.
The use of cannabis mostly containing intoxicant tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) produced mild driving impairment, but not for more than four hours.
The findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, and lead author Dr Thomas Arkell said they are good news for those considering treatment using CBD-based products.
CBD has been used to treat epilepsy, anxiety and chronic pain.
"With cannabis laws changing globally, jurisdictions are grappling with the issue of cannabis-impaired driving," Dr Arkell said in a statement.
"These results provide much needed insights into the magnitude and duration of impairment caused by different types of cannabis and can help to guide road-safety policy not just in Australia but around the world."
Australian Associated Press