New Training in Detection of Illicit Drugs in Drivers

Period of Performance: 09/30/1997 - 08/31/1998


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

THE Walsh Group, PA
Bethesda, MD 20817
Principal Investigator


The goal of this research is to develop, evaluate, and disseminate cost- efficient training programs for law enforcement agencies utilizing new drug testing technology to facilitate the detection of drugged drivers. To prevent drug-related traffic accidents, officials must be able to detect drivers under-the-influence of drugs as they routinely do now with alcohol detection devices. The availability of new drug-testing devices capable of providing immediate, accurate and reliable results provides a unique opportunity to apply this technology in the enforcement of drugs and driving laws. The proposed research will establish the commercial potential for innovative application of on-site testing technology in drugged driving detection and deterrence. This research plan proposes to integrate information from drug/driving research with results of the phase I feasibility study to develop training materials and curricula both for DUI Officers and breath testing technicians. The research will synthesize the testing technology and procedures into existing instructional programs. This new training will undergo a series of research evaluations and will ultimately be redesigned in an interactive computer (CD ROM) format. These programs will not only increase cost-effectiveness and efficiency of training but will make drunk and drugged driver training much more available to law enforcement agencies across the country. PROPOSED COMMERCIAL APPLICATION: Driving under the influence of illegal drugs has become a serious public health problem. Drugged driving is typically under-reported as law enforcement officials have not bad the technology needed to detect recent use of drugs. New technology has evolved which now permits the on-site urinalysis assessment of recent drug use. Based on these facts, the development of a training curriculum including the application of these new technologies to traffic safety would have great commercial viability with law enforcement and safety officials.