DUI laws apply to alcohol and marijuana, prescription drugs and illegal drugs, as well as over-the-counter medications. Drivers impaired by multiple substances (alcohol and drugs or a mix of drugs) are more than 3 times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash.
Washington Impaired Driving Advisory Council (WIDAC)
The WIDAC meets quarterly in January, April, July, and October. Through WIDAC, the Traffic Safety Commissioners hear from all the agencies and organizations working to reduce impaired driving. WIDAC helps coordinate their work. The advisory council is made up of:
- 10 voting members from 7 state agencies with direct responsibility for traffic safety.
- 15 advisory members with expertise in prevention, deterrence, treatment, rehabilitation, and program management.
Target Zero Teams
Target Zero Teams have placed full-time Washington State Patrol DUI squads in King, Pierce, Snohomish, Yakima and Spokane counties. Local law enforcement officers joined the WSP teams on weekends and other common DUI times. These multi-jurisdictional squads focused their efforts on locations with the highest concentrations of DUI crashes.
During the first 24 months of this project (July 1, 2010 – June 30, 2012) in King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties:
- TZT members contacted more than 34,000 motorists and arrested 6,693 DUI offenders.
- TZT arrests for DUI and tickets for speeding and seatbelt violations have resulted in over $14 million in fines and fees.
Based on the Federal Highway Administration’s fatality cost estimate, which includes societal costs, this project showed a 115:1 return on investment for the project funds.
Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) Program
The WTSC supports the state DRE program through grant funding to Washington State Patrol. A DRE is a law enforcement officer trained to recognize impairment in drivers under the influence of drugs other than, or in addition to, alcohol. Many law enforcement agencies in the state of Washington participate.
Ignition Interlock Program
The WTSC supports the state’s Interlock Program through grant funding. The program monitors ignition interlock installers by conducting annual onsite audits to verify the devices are being calibrated and installed under state guidelines. Click the button below to learn more about Washington State Patrol’s Program.
Mobile Impaired Driving Unit (MIDU)
The WTSC supports the Washington State Patrol’s MIDU through grant funding. The MIDU is a self-contained 36-foot motorhome that has been turned into a mobile DUI processing center and incident command post. When requested, the MIDU travels across the state in support of law enforcement efforts during DUI emphasis patrols or to emergency incidents such as wild land fires or other natural disasters. It’s a full-service police station on wheels. For questions or to request the MIDU for an event, please contact the MIDU State Coordinator via email: MIDU@wsp.wa.gov
DUI courts are criminal justice programs that combine drug and alcohol treatment with intensive court supervision to reduce DUI recidivism. DUI courts follow 10 guiding principles as established by the National Center for DWI Courts. These programs emphasize accountability and long-term treatment. Studies show DUI courts to be effective at reducing recidivism of both DUIs and other crimes. The studies also show the model is effective at reducing taxpayer costs due to positive outcomes for DUI offenders including fewer rearrests, less time in jail, and less time in prison.
Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutors (TSRP)
The WTSC currently provides grant funding for 4 TSRPs in our state. The TSRP program is identified in the Target Zero plan as a best practice to reduce the incidence of impaired driving. The TSRPs have access to the state’s experts in Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) testing, toxicology, SFST, Ignition Interlock, and DRE programs. Easy access to these resources, on behalf of statewide prosecutors, is a tremendous benefit for our state’s many prosecutors.
Law Enforcement Phlebotomy
The WTSC provides grant funding to support the training and certification of law enforcement phlebotomists. Law enforcement phlebotomists allow officers to process more impaired drivers in less time. This time savings will allow officers to get out of the hospital waiting rooms and back on the roads to stop and process more DUIs.
High Visibility Enforcement (HVE)
High Visibility Enforcement (HVE) campaigns are a highly effective national model of law enforcement patrols supported with relevant and educational media. Law enforcement agencies work together in locations where a high number of serious and deadly crashes occur. Public awareness campaigns warn the public of the upcoming patrols.
24/7 Sobriety Program
The state created a 24/7 sobriety monitoring program to provide an alternative to incarceration for impaired drivers.
Washington Laws Related to Impaired Driving