Did You Know You Can’t Smoke Cannabis in Cars Even if the Car Isn’t Moving? And Other Marijuana Related Rules the City of Eureka Wants You to Know

Woman looking at marijuana buds

Woman looking at cannabis flowers through a glass case at the Emerald Cup in 2014. [Photo by Kym Kemp]

Press release from the City of Eureka:

RE: Public Consumption of Cannabis
While adults over the age of 21 may now legally purchase and consume recreational cannabis products in California, it is important for the public to be aware that there are still many legal restrictions in place. The consumption of cannabis products through smoking, ingesting, drinking, vaping, etc. is not legal in public places. This includes sidewalks, streets, alleys, parks, public trails, waterways, federal lands, beaches, government-owned lands, and other public places. In Eureka, consumption may not occur in restaurants, bars, retail stores, or any other commercial businesses that have general public access.

The consumption of cannabis is also illegal anywhere smoking tobacco is prohibited, including but not limited to: recreational areas, public places, common areas, within thirty feet of a building, within enclosed places of employment, unenclosed dining areas, within 100 feet of the Eureka Boardwalk, private unenclosed areas (such as a porch, balcony, deck etc), and service areas. The consumption of cannabis is also illegal within 1,000 feet of schools, day care centers, and youth centers while children are present.

Individuals that choose to consume recreational cannabis should do so responsibly and on private property (with permission from the owner). Also note that property owners and landlords can ban the use and possession of cannabis on their properties.

Drivers and passengers may not consume cannabis in a vehicle, whether the vehicle is in motion or stationary. If you have cannabis in your vehicle, it must be in a closed container that is not accessible while driving. Otherwise, it must be kept in the trunk of the vehicle. Law enforcement officers are authorized by State Law to conduct cannabis sobriety tests. Driving under the influence of cannabis is illegal. While it is not illegal to be under the influence of cannabis in public, a person may be considered intoxicated (or “drunk in public”) for the purposes of Penal Code 647(f) if they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, including marijuana, to such an extent that they:

1. Are unable to exercise care for their safety or the safety of others, or
2. Interfere with, obstruct, or prevent others from using streets, sidewalks, or other “public ways.

Cannabis remains illegal under federal law. This press release is not intended to be comprehensive of all requirements and limitations for the personal use of cannabis. It is the responsibility of individuals choosing to partake in adult use recreational cannabis to know and understand local, State, and Federal laws. Individuals with questions about cannabis consumption are encouraged to contact the Eureka Police Department at 707-441-4060. More information may also be found at the following sites:

  • https://cannabis.ca.gov/
  • https://www.cdph.ca.gov/
  • https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/DO/letstalkcannabis/Pages/LetsTalkCannabis.aspx
  • https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/DO/letstalkcannabis/CDPH%20Document%20Library/October%202017%20Update/CDPH-Adult_Use_Cannabis_Penalties.pdf


  • Wow it’s more illegal now than before we legalized it! Wtf I guess it’s just another reminder that we live in a police state and can’t wipe our butts without the government telling us when and how then taking 25% of the crap as it leaves our asses!

  • Yay so now it’s going to be more enforced when and where you can smoke before legalization! It used to just be a 100 dollar fine for under a oz in your car and there was no way for them to prove you’re high while driving. Now they can give you a dui!? What test can prove that?? Landlords ban smoking legal herb but being a out of control drunk is perfectly fine I guess. I’m still baffle at how a majority of people were oblivious that the “legalization” was the capitialztion of cannabis……really you were less likely to get in trouble without a 215 then you are now. Way to go dumbass voters!

    • Blotus.mtn.parking

      Rules and regulations are better than not being able to safely purchase herb imo.

      No more shady deals with the possibility of being ripped off, killed or poisoned with pesticides.

      And if you’d ever lost a loved one to a stoned driver I’m sure your views on DUIs would be different.

      Just another perspective.
      Respectively, your fellow local “dumbass voter”

      • Um your getting ripped off… belive me!

        • 40 bucks from the man on the corner or 75 in the “legal” shop? You do the math

          • Blotus.mtn.parking

            Tested and guaranteed clean, not dealing with sheisty peeps, it’s delivered at my house the same day and I won’t get ticketed for buying it. To me that’s worth it. And it’s not $75, it’s more like $50.

      • Not to mention that hopefully many of the people degrading our environment blindly for more shit-weed, as opposed to good-herb, will be forced to reconsider their adventures and escapades in our areas.

        I don’t like all the enforcement agendas, especially the DUI arms of it, but that’s the downs of the ups, for me.

        I’ve smoked herb for 20+ years, no accidents…

        See you on the road!

        For anyone smoking while driving, well, you should understand what Probable Cause is, and never ever have the smell of weed in your rig. That is high school stuff, grow up. Keep the bong at home, and out of the car.

      • I would like for you to show prove that they were ONLY high from CANABIS & NOTHING else!! CANABIS is an HERB NOT a DRUG!!!!!

        • Good greif. It’s both. STOP the preaching that this is a medical herb. It’s a drug. Wars are being fought over it. There’s billions to be made. If it alters your mind,it’s a drug. Just seen the consequence of a kid have s seizure doing a dab for the first time…not a pretty site. Try that with basil mamma!!!…

          • Yes…..I am in the medical profession

          • First, I agree with you it is a drug. Second, though, the kid having seizures (at least the one video I saw) had used synthetic marijuana not plant-based marijuana. There is a difference.

            • Not sure about this video. This happened here in humboldt co. But…I will looks into video. This was store bought dabs. Kid had never smoked “humboldt” primo and was from out of area. Just a moderate “herb” medicine overdose.

              • Saw that happen to 3 peops when Dabs first came on scene. Untested bho dabs back then. Don’t drink a pint of ” moonshine” first time ya drink.if we had sex Ed & drug Ed this wouldn’t happen as much.

      • Ive known many stoners that wrecked due to smoking, not because they were ” soooo high” but because they dropped the joint or pipe while driving and tried to retrieve it off the floor while driving. Stupid. Marijuana does not incapacitate or blur the senses like alcohol. But smoking while driving is dumb anyways.

    • It’s always been against the law to drive under the influence of a drug, even marijuana and prescription drugs. The roadside tests look for impairment, not a specific drug. Chemical tests look for the specific intoxicants. While there isn’t a breath test for marijuana yet, an officer can always order a blood test if they suspect a driver is under the influence of a drug.


        • It’s a drug. It alters your mind. Opium is a drug. Alcohol is a drug.marijuana is a drug! Un like cocaine it DOES have positive medical purposes. Marijuana is a DRUG

          • So mamma psychedelic mushrooms are mushrooms….are they a drug? Do they alter your mind? Are they sold on the black market? Are they illegal in 38 states?

          • Marijuana is classified as a schedule 1 narcotic. That means its considered a highly dangerous narcotic with NO MEDICAL BENEFITS. Crack, cocaine, meth are all far more dangerous, addicting and more deadly than marijuana but are all classed schedule 2 meaning the government finds these drugs safer than marijuana. Mmkay. This is something that makes me have no faith or confidence in the obvious idiots who classify and make the regulations concerning marijuana. If someone can honestly tell me they think coke meth and crack are safer than pot then i have no confidence in their intelligence at all. 0%. Marijuana was classed by the same idiots who made the reefer madness in their last century ignorance.

        • It does have the ability to intoxicate you though.


          Herbs are a seasoning that go on my pizza I don’t smoke the oregano.

  • Pretty much covers everyplace.
    Good luck policing that!

  • Soooo…. What if I am sitting on toilet making my morning deposit while riding in a motor home through redwood park listening to some Grateful Dead. Then a 45 minute live version of Terrapin Station comes on and I have a stroke of genius to make a gravity bong in the bathroom sink and decide to toke it up? Would that still be illegal? Just asking for a friend…..

  • The Voice Of Reason

    The state is groveling to the Feds due to the fact the Feds will not get on the magic-bus and act like humans.. I agree it was a lot more fun and less constrictive to light-up before legalization…

  • County warns of collapse.

  • They have the very brightest members of Eureka’s finest working around the clock on this one… They are working in shifts in order to stop folks from blazing the la la in their hoopdies….. Job #1

    Forget property crime, the opiod crisis, cancer rates skyrocketing…. it’s time to arrest the danged merry-joowana dopers… The corporations are here to steal your livelihoods tree people, and they are letting you know that the police are on their side.

  • Non loco observer

    This is the best thing ever finally. DUI everyone under the influence while driving a motor vehicle. The new breathalyzer tells law enforcement how recently you have smoked to help them evaluate whether you are under the influence. Yes yes yes treat this the same as any other drug. Thank you voters in Southern Cali.

    • Do I smell more revenue? Give them the false hope of legalization and then drain them dry! So 4 marijuana DUIs and your in San Quinten. That would be hilarious!

  • It’s isn’t alcohol and there is no way to measure ones intoxication level. If you tested my blood it my be half cannabinoids, but im not stoned or impaired. LOL

  • Uh yeah…. Good luck with that officers…dont waste your time. We bin drivin high a long time. It is called keeping your vehicle registered, all lites working, and having a driver’s liscense. Go the speed limit …follow the rules. If you have your shit together and give them no probable cause then you should be good in California. Arkansas, nope..police go out of the scope of law without so much as blinking an eye.

    • Indeed, mind the probable cause people.

      Its really easy to never be asked to take a field sobriety test or breathalyzer.

  • It gives them many other reasons to hassle us, if they so desire….

  • *The *consumption* of cannabis is also illegal within 1,000 feet of schools, day care centers, and youth centers while children are present…”

    That’s almost 2/10th of a mile!!

    Growing and processing restrictions maybe, but that “law” seems laughable and is a redundant restriction as it sounds like cannabis is pretty much “banned ” anywhere but your own home (with permission of course if u rent +?+ Seriously .

    • I wonder if alchohol use is illegal within those same distances? Should be.

      • Non loco observer

        Oh I wonder if tobacco is restricted, oh I wonder if meth is restricted oh I wonder if black tar is restricted. Wtf there all drugs Humbolt grow the fn up.

    • But I thought it was legal man! Legalize it! Nope…it just highly taxed and regulated with actuall rules that are punishable by law, but hey , enjoy ( and pay me )

  • Did you know that cannabis is legal in North Korea, for God’s sake? For a long time I’d had mixed feelings about legalization. But if people can smoke it in the most repressive country on earth, they ought to be able to smoke it here.

    Still, driving while loaded is bad news. Admittedly, not nearly as bad as drunk driving. Just have your fun while in the comfort of a dwelling, and then wait a little while before getting behind the wheel. It’s not much to ask.

    Also, did you know that you can have your boat confiscated by the Coast Guard if, while boarding your boat on the pretext of conducting a check for all the proper safety devices–which they don’t need a warrant to do–and they find a marijuana cigarette?

    • Maybe californians should move to North Korea. I hear they have lots of “free housing” over ther. Lol

    • Marijuana is not necessarily ‘legal’ in NK. There are conflicting reports so not 100% positive support in North Korea for consumption. It may not be even marijuana (as we know it) that are available in special market place that various reports have come from.

  • It use to be that the legalization of marijuana didn’t really make a difference to me. Maybe it should be viewed just like alcohol and cigarettes as all the pro marijuana supporters wanted. Now it is legal and all you hear is complaints about it being regulated just like alcohol. Landlords can control alcohol (raging drunk), landlords can control cigarette smoking, and the rules of marijuana possession in a vehicle are the same as alcohol. And yes there are tests that can show impairment while under the influence of marijuana. The rules are not going to change a whole lot of what has been happening around here for the past several years, except now they might be able to enforce the rules. Smoke another and chill.

    • The prop 64 rules were written by one group of rich corporate shills to bankrupt everyone else, but other than that yeah

  • “A new study from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration finds that drivers who use marijuana are at a significantly lower risk for a crash than drivers who use alcohol. And after adjusting for age, gender, race and alcohol use, drivers who tested positive for marijuana were no more likely to crash than who had not used any drugs or alcohol prior to driving.”


    • Good catch, ullr. Thanks.

    • The Washington post? Really?!

      • The Washington Post is consistently weighted highly on factual reporting. According to https://mediabiasfactcheck.com/washington-post/, while the Post often publishes “factual information that utilizes loaded words (wording that attempts to influence an audience by using appeal to emotion or stereotypes) to favor liberal causes,,,[T]hese sources are generally trustworthy for information, but may require further investigation,” it’s actual factual reporting is “HIGH.”

        • Washington compost..sorry had too.their poll are always right..lol.if so we would have a different president..

          • They were certainly in good company. Almost every poll showed Clinton was likely to win. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/11/09/why-2016-election-polls-missed-their-mark/ And the Pew Research Center is rated as least biased in case you are concerned. https://mediabiasfactcheck.com/pew-research/

            • This is why I read your “media “ thread kym! All other news is fake,bought,one sided bull crap

              • We’re all opinionated. We’ve just got to do our best to use facts to express our opinions and—this is the really hard stuff for me—try to be open to the facts presented by people with opinions that contradict yours. I keep working at both of those.

            • Facts and reporting are not the same thing. A fact may be- Congress passes a Republican sponsored bill with party line votes. That could be reported is – “Republicans pass bill over obstructionist agenda of Democrats” or “Republicans fail to convince Democrats to vote for bill they find flawed.” Both headlines are facts but they are cherry picked words to support the reporter’s opinion. The words chosen reek of emotional connotations.

              If the focus of the article is to affix blame, it is implied that there is wrong needing the blame. If it points out selected (and probably gratuitous) history about one side and doesn’t mention similar history of the other, the article is factual but deliberately misleading. If a statement is taken out of context to make a poor show of it, it is factual in the literal sense but not in an ethical sense.

              That was my complaint about the article by the Washington Post you linked in the government shut down piece and is typical of Washington Post articles in general. Their ‘facts’ are not all pertinent facts or even attempt balancing them. And a person who finds them congenial will be unlikely to look further and is left with the impression the Post prefers them to have, which certainly never going to be good for Trump, Republicans or the voters that supported them.

              The Washington Post is very clever in its bias. But biased it is.

  • Is there an obvious difference between THC vapes and nicotine vapes? If someone is vaping while sitting on a bench, how would a cop know if it was nicotine or THC?

    • There is not always an obvious difference as they don’t really have much of an odor. I would say you are fine to use yours in public as long as you aren’t causing other problems that will bring the attention of law enforcement to you.

    • Cops aren’t going to be beating the street arresting everyone who smokes in public, this simply makes it a lot easier for them to Levy fines against you if caught up in any other kind of mishap. They’re going to be losing a lot of funding for marijuana enforcement. so they’re going to switch over to collecting more tax revenue by fining people for DUIs and public intoxication.

    • Do an experiment: smell user’s breathe after they vap (long as its not ‘flavored’) … might be strange but talking to people that have just gotten done vaping, you can sometimes tell the difference in/on their breathe if you have a delicate nose that can differentiate.

  • *Please READ what you vote on…!!!

    Of course there’s a ishtload of new laws, and language which will lend the market to a handful of producers controlling the state.
    To add insult to injury The Humboldt County Failure-To-Plan Commission has done NOTHING to ensure our hard earned Humboldt name superior product and brand has ANY future.
    Colorado is a DESTINATION for Cannabis Tourism… ANYONE THINK OF THAT???
    No… just tax the producers out of the legal market and continue seizing all you’ve worked for.
    It’s embarrassing. It’s sad. No future for cannabis in the Home of North American Cannabis.
    Let’s see in ten years if anyone even knows the Emerald Triangle… off the Silk Road right?
    Though 64 is not to supersede 215 it already has. And the one “hand-out” to give the non-multi-nationals (and def non-mom-and-pop) a chance WAS the 5 year wait. That’s already gone too.
    We were better off with 215. FAiL.

    • This is how socialist treat any kind of money maker.

    • there are people who are working hard in Humboldt to make it a brand and a destination! you can go to several resort B&B where cannabis is on the dinner menu, special boutique strains available in the gift shop, special infused beauty product …. pick up a copy of the emerald magazine (or read online esp back copies), they have lots of different features and advertisements that are starting to promote the HumCo weedscene…

      • Yeah I’m sure all the pot heads will be coming here to smoke. Just like I always visit Kentucky to drink bourbon.

        • Well, I know my mom who never drinks went to the Jack Daniels factory. And I went to the Bushmills factory in Ireland. I think I had a sip or two once but I’m not much of a drinker. I think you’d be surprised how many people would be intrigued to see marijuana growing and to see it cured, etc.

            • I don’t know. Touring a pot farm is more akin to watching corn grow. And I don’t think there is enough there to cover more than a few seconds of interest. Unless sales are involved of course.

              • Or, unless your attention span is only a few seconds. And there will be business deals with legit businesses made. I’ll be building the cozy cabins for them to stay in for the weekend.

      • You couldn’t pay me to live in [edit-Garberville], let alone spend money to visit there. Get your gas tourist and try not to stumble over bums on your way back to your car

  • I can’t wait till one of these blazed out fools decide to drive and runs into me .I will own whatever shitty property they thought they had and take insurance for a ride too weed stays in your blood for weeks .loveit

    • Non loco observer

      Straight up.

      • There’s a bunch of junkie addicts down in garberville right now.drinking alcohol,drug dealers in and out of lone pine..I wouldn’t worry too much.cops driving by don’t care at all… continue on…unless you look like you might have money..these rules are for normal places,not here..lol


    Smoking Pot in a car or anywhere reminds me of the new Tide pod Challenge. I think I’ll stick with the Coors light at home in the evening after work.

  • THC tell me all you’re read on socialism I’m fascinated your mind needs studied.

    Emerald Mag is brilliant, and an idea I had long ago which like most come so fast I rarely follow em (Clone Thyself First –a local cloner & teacher of mine) AND it appears to be growing(!!) I put it out where I interface with tourists, in prime real estate. I was so happy to read the “Coming Out of the Closet” (er.. greenhouse) issue. We gotta grab this thing! It has a lovely look. But really… Where are the cafés OPEN in Garberville? The storefront in Myers Flat? In The Cove? In Whitethorn? In Redcrest?
    –everywhere there’s a picture of a redwood–
    This is Cannabis Country! It’s (not) Legal!

    Look, we made Page 16 of 20 (??) in the most recent SoHum Tourist Guide. With advice to call who? Not an entrepreneur, a fearless visionary, a garden overlooking the Pacific or an infused bar in Phillipsville… a new formed freshly taxed government agency. Just what a visitor from Georgia wants to do.. Colorado is the spot for Cannabis tourism. 64’s a hoodwink ‘n the county (Mendo too) appears all cash-n-carry… even if you’ve paid your Union dues.

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