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November 2012

IACP DRE Training Conference Draws More than 700 Attendees

The Drug Recognition Expert Section’s 18th Annual Training Conference on Drugs, Alcohol, and Impaired Driving was held in Seattle, Washington, August 16–18. This year’s conference was cohosted by Chief John Batiste with his Washington State Patrol, along with the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.

DRE Section Chair Deputy Chief James Maisano of the Norman, Oklahoma, Police Department presided during the three-day event.

Attendance this year was exceptional. More than 730 attendees from across the United States and Canada participated. Also attending were prosecutors, toxicologists, medical and educational professionals, and highway safety advocates.

Since 1995, this annual training conference has kept DREs and other health and safety professionals updated on drug trends, legal issues, and innovative technology.

In addition to general sessions featuring the latest research and initiatives, daily workshops addressed a variety of topics, including

  • medical marijuana and driving;
  • new trends in drugs (such as narcotic analgesics and other new opiates including spice and bath salts);
  • successful driving-under-the-influence prosecutions;
  • multiagency cooperation efforts;
  • horizontal gaze nystagmus and other eye movements during impairment;
  • medical conditions that mimic impairment (that is, medical rule-outs);
  • collision scene management;
  • best practices in training and certification; and
  • prosecution and toxicology updates.

Gil Kerlikowske, director of the White House Office on National Drug Control Policy, paid a special visit on the second day to address the attendees.

Next year’s conference will be held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and the host committee has already developed a comprehensive, educational agenda. More information will be available early next year on how to register for this conference. For information, visit, mouse over Membership, click Sections, and select Drug Recognition Expert Section. ♦


From The Police Chief, vol. LXXIX, no. , November 2012. Copyright held by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 USA.

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