From the Rapid City Journal in South Dakota
In Rapid City, South Dakota law enforcement officials are actively educating drivers on the effects and destructive consequences associated with driving while intoxicated; more specifically- driving while under the influence of inhalants. In efforts to increase the detection and visibility of inhalant abuse among drivers, South Dakota’s State Highway Patrol has enlisted 13 certified drug recognition experts to help train local officers to identify the presence of inhalants in substance related vehicle accidents and driving infringements.
South Dakota has recently intensified state-wide efforts to combat the tragic results produced by drivers under the influence of inhalants. In 2006 a 54-year-old Rapid City man was killed after his motorcycle was hit from behind by a teenage driver who was ‘huffing’ computer duster. According to police documents “this [has been] the only vehicular fatality recorded to date in Rapid City where huffing played a role.”
In May 2008 another inhalant related accident took place in Rapid City, leaving an innocent motorist with significant brain trauma after being struck by a “blacked out” driver. The driver, who had passed out as a result of ingesting large quantities of duster received a 10-year suspended prison term for negligent driving.
Rapid City Police Sgt. Sue Fox remains optimistic that this particular accident will be the last major traffic incident involving inhalants in Rapid City.“There is no doubt about how intoxicating [inhalants are],” Fox said. “[Inhalants are] so incredibly intoxicating that people can’t function at all.”