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Police Department

DUI Unit

The DUI Unit is responsible for aggressively and proactively seeking out impaired drivers. In 2013 there were 1,329 DUI Arrests made from this unit alone. The arrests are extremely important when you consider the following figures. In 2012, Davidson County experienced 66 fatal crashes with 29% of those crashes involving an impaired driver. The impairment percentage for 2013 are still pending toxicology results.

The unit uses enforcement efforts that are designed to target impaired driving. One of the methods is DUI or Sobriety Check Points.

DUI sobriety checkpoint sign

It is statistically proven that October is the most common month of the year to be arrested for DUI followed by March and May.

Cars lined up in Sobriety Checkpoint

Friday is the most common night for DUI arrests with Saturday and Thursday the next most common.

Officers assigned to the DUI Unit have been trained to detect both alcohol and drug impairment. Some of the officers are certified as Drug Recognition Experts and often assist in training officers at the Metropolitan Nashville Police Academy and the Tennessee Law Enforcement Academy.

Officer talking to suspect

Officers are assigned with either partially marked or completely unmarked vehicles that are equipped with onboard camera systems which record and capture the driver’s actions as well as the Standard Field Sobriety Tasks. Standard Field Sobriety Tasks are designed to give the DUI officer indications of the subject’s level of impairment.

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus
Officer performing HGN on suspect

Walk and Turn
Suspect performing walk and turn test for Officer

One Leg Stand
Suspect peforming one legged stand

Once there is reasonable suspicion to believe that the subject is driving while impaired, they are required by law to submit to a breath alcohol test or blood test. Officers use a machine called an intoximeter to measure the alcohol content that is emitted from the person’s breath. These instruments are in certain officer’s police vehicles and police facilities.