Michigan Police Departments Part of Pilot Program Testing for Drugs in Roadside Stops
Posted By Schick Shadel Hospital || Nov 8, 2017
A dozen police agencies in Michigan began using handheld devices to test drivers’ saliva for a number of drugs on Wednesday, November 8.
This pilot program was announced on November 2, and is set to run for one year in Washtenaw, St. Clair, Kent, Delta, and Berrien counties. The Alere DDS2 oral fluid test instrument will test for six different substances, opiates, methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana, benzodiazepines, and amphetamine.
Officers who have received advanced training in the assessment of drug and alcohol impairment, Drug Recognition Experts (DREs), will be the only officers allowed to administer these tests during the pilot program according to Michigan State Police spokeswoman Shanon Banner. Refusing to take this test will be treated just like refusing to take a breathalyzer test and will result in a civil infraction.
"Drug Recognition Experts will continue to follow the same policies and procedures for investigating a person they believe to be operating a vehicle while impaired on a controlled substance. The only difference in the pilot counties will be if the DRE determines a motorist is impaired on drugs, they will ask the person to submit to an oral fluid test," Banner said.
Following this pilot program, additional one-year pilot programs may be implemented in eligible counties not included among the initial five.
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