In the absence of other information, law enforcement officers have tended to rely on their alcohol enforcement training for the enforcement of driving under the influence of drugs (DUID). However, alcohol does not provide an acceptable model for other drugs as chemical tests do not reliably reflect the extent of impairment by drugs. In contrast to the correlation of peak BAC and peak impairment, the relationship between drug level and performance frequently is unknown or unpredictable. Further, interpretations are complicated by the effects of pharmacologically active metabolites, by the potential for performance enhancement by certain drugs at certain doses, and by issues of individual sensitivity and tolerance. It appears likely that tests for DUID will rely more heavily on behavioral or sobriety tests. The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) program, which encompasses a system of training, certification, and utilization, is instructive as an example of one agency's response to the need for methods of DUID enforcement. The hallmark of the LAPD DRE approach is that symptoms are observed, and interpreted in a systematic manner. In a laboratory study of the DRE methods, DREs correctly identified placebo subjects 95% of the time, but their ratings of "intoxication" were dependent on the drug and dose level. The field evaluation data confirm that trained officers recognize the presence of a drug or drugs with a high level of accuracy.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Brain Information Service

    California University, Center for Health Science
    Los Angeles, CA  United States  90024
  • Authors:
    • Burns, M
  • Publication Date: 1987-1

Media Info

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00493561
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
  • Report/Paper Numbers: HS-040 262
  • Files: HSL, TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Apr 30 1990 12:00AM