GLEN BURNIE, MD - Today, 29 officers from 18 law enforcement agencies across Maryland graduated from a rigorous 40-hour program that develops leaders in the enforcement of alcohol-impaired driving laws. The DUI Institute, which is in its 14th year, was developed by the Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration’s (MDOT MVA) Highway Safety Office, the University of Maryland (UMD) Department of Behavioral and Community Health, police officers, and national experts.
“In Maryland, an average of 156 people are killed and nearly 3,500 are injured each year in a crash where a driver was impaired by alcohol and/or drugs,” said MDOT Motor Vehicle Administrator and Governor Hogan’s Highway Safety Representative Christine Nizer. “Our police officers put their lives on the line to protect us from impaired and other dangerous drivers. We commend our DUI Institute graduates for their leadership in helping us reach zero roadway deaths.”
From June 3 to 8, DUI Institute participants – including Maryland State Police troopers, Maryland Transportation Authority Police officers, and local police officers and sheriff’s deputies – learned the latest information on the effectiveness of impaired driving countermeasures, including ignition interlocks, DUI courts and sobriety checkpoints; police traffic management; the physiology of alcohol and its abuse/addiction; and courtroom testimony. In addition, officers received advanced training in conducting Standardized Field Sobriety Testing and practiced these techniques with volunteers.
“Graduates of the DUI Institute are more effective in making impaired driving arrests that will lead to a conviction,” said Dr. Kenneth Beck, who facilitates the training for the UMD Institute of Advanced Law Enforcement Studies. “This award-winning training gives officers the unique opportunity to improve their skills in writing reports and providing courtroom testimony by participating in a mock court trial where they present evidence in front of judges and attorneys.”
The DUI Institute is sponsored by the Maryland Highway Safety Office and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. More than 400 officers have graduated from the program since its inception.
Editor’s Note: For more information on Maryland’s Toward Zero Deaths campaign, please visit towardzerodeathsmd.com or find us on Facebook at @towardzerodeathsmd, on Twitter at @tzd_maryland, and on Instagram at twdzerodeaths_md. For the latest MDOT News, follow us on twitter @MDOTNews and #mdotnews.