SEATTLE — A private company is hoping drivers would voluntarily pull over to perform a roadside drug and alcohol test on Washington roads for some extra money.
Pacific Research Institute (PIRE), along with several other federal and non-profit agencies, is looking for approval from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission to begin work on a voluntary research study that would allegedly give a snapshot of how many impaired drivers are on the road at all times of the day.
According to PIRE, the survey is voluntary, and drivers who decide to pull over to participate will receive $50 for giving a blood sample, $10 for a saliva sample and an additional $5 for a paper and pencil survey.
Drivers can leave at any time, PIRE officials said, but any driver determined to be impaired — with a .05 percent or above — would not be allowed back on the road. Instead, transportation home would be provided by PIRE.
It is unknown for certain if cops would be alerted if a driver was determined to be impaired. However, PIRE asks law enforcement officers to monitor the survey on the roads, and the company pays for law enforcement overtime.
PIRE officials said Washington is of interest for the study because of the recent privatization of alcohol and the legalization of pot. PIRE hopes to start the survey prior to the legal sale of pot and possibly again six months after.
So far, the program has not been green-lighted in Washington, as the state transportation commission admitted there is controversy surrounding it.
“Many details to be worked through,” transportation officials said on their website.
Impaired driving kills about 200 people a year in Washington. Random DUI checkpoints, while allowed in other states, are illegal in Washington.
Watch the video below of stops made by PIRE: