California Highway Patrol officers in southwest Riverside County and elsewhere will be ramping up anti-drugged driving patrols next week to snare cannabis users who celebrate the unofficial marijuana “holiday” of 4/20, by getting high and driving.

“Alcohol is not the only substance that can lead to an arrest for driving under the influence,” said CHP Officer Mike Lassig, spokesman for the agency’s Temecula-area station. “Cannabis, prescription drugs and illegal drugs all can impair driving. Driving is a complex task, and any drug can slow reaction time.”

Increased patrols are planned all day Tuesday, Lassig said. The date, April 20, has become synonymous with recreational marijuana-based drug use and is commonly referred to as either “four-twenty” or “Weed Day.” The Grateful Dead helped popularize the phrase.

The annual celebration has become more widespread with the legalization of marijuana in California and other states.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has provided grants, administered and distributed by the California Office of Traffic Safety, to cover overtime and other expenses tied to 4/20 law enforcement operations statewide.

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