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California Ad Meant to Discourage Drugged Driving Nipped in the Bud

 SACRAMENTO -- California nipped an ad about driving high right in the bud, pulling it from the airwaves after some called it controversial.

Although the message was meant to discourage drugged driving, the characters in the commercial explain why they need medicinal and enjoy recreational pot.

Some worried the delivery could encourage more people to start smoking, especially now that people can buy it legally.

“Even before, when it wasn’t legal, I would see people smoking while they were driving," said local Frank Barbosa. "So, I’m thinking now that it’s legal they’ll probably do it even more.”

The California Department of Traffic Safety told FOX40 they "are cognizant and share the concerns expressed over certain elements of the ad" and "will continue to refine and improve (its) messaging."

After breaking her back 28 years ago and living through decades of chronic pain, Theresa Pierce did not think the ad needed to be pulled from the air.

"People need to chill, is what I say. Seriously,” Pierce said.

Pierce was at RCP, an Arden-area dispensary where she picked up the pot she uses to ease that pain. Before pot she said she got by with "sheer will." She says preventing drugged driving is a matter of individual responsibility and not related to why it is used.

“If they are responsible then they won’t drive if they become impaired,” Pierce said.

The OTS released the following statement regarding the ad:

"The Office of Traffic Safety is committed to informing people about the dangers of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. We are cognizant and share the concerns expressed over certain elements of our most recent ads. As a result, we will continue to refine and improve messaging as we move forward.

In the meantime, we are using an ad that was produced last year as part of our 2017 DUID campaign.

The points remain the same - drive high and you can get a DUI."