Drug-Impaired Driving

According to the 2013-2014 NHTSA National Roadside Survey, 22.5 percent of weekend, nighttime drivers tested positive for illegal, prescription, or over-the-counter drugs that could cause driving impairment. More than 15 percent tested positive for illicit drugs, and more than 12 percent tested positive for THC (delta 9 tetrahydrocannabinol), which is a 4 percent increase from the 2007 survey. An additional 2009 NHTSA study tested fatally injured drivers and found that nationally 18 percent tested positive for at least one illicit, prescription, or over-the-counter drug. This is an increase from a 2005 NHTSA study that found that 13 percent of fatally injured drivers tested positive for at least one drug type. The study also found that 23 percent of California’s 1,678 fatally injured drivers in 2009 tested positive for drugs. OTS grants have provided increased officer training in the NHTSA Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE) and Drug Recognition Evaluator (DRE) programs, which has lead to better detection of drug-impaired drivers. OTS grants also have funded vertical prosecution programs for drug-impaired driving cases.


  • Provide increased training to law enforcement to identify drug-impaired drivers.