Cambria County Impaired Driving Task Force receives award from state DUI-prevention group

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Sep. 24—EBENSBURG, Pa. — The Cambria County Impaired Driving Task Force received recognition from the Pennsylvania DUI Association during the Cambria County commissioners' meeting Thursday.

The association presented the task force with a drug recognition expert award of excellence.

David Andrascik, the association's state coordinator of the drug classification program, noted that it was the first time that the award was given out and that it was received by an individual or individual program in each of the association's six regions.

Craig Amos, regional DUI program administrator, said that, over the years, impaired driving has changed.

"The face of DUI has changed. It's no longer DUI alcohol, now it's DUI drug," he said, adding that training has been needed to spot the differences in impairment.

Law enforcement officials can partake in Drug Evaluation and Classification Program training to become drug recognition experts, which helps them note if an individual is impaired by something other than alcohol, Amos said.

Cambria County has two detectives who are certified drug recognition experts — Kristy Freoni and Bill Hines.

Amos said that having two drug recognition experts is "phenomenal" for a county of Cambria's size.

District Attorney Gregory Neugebauer said that the pair are always on call if an officer were to need a drug recognition expert.

"The program is vitally important, and it makes a big difference in our community," Neugebauer added.

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