While many Coloradans celebrate Fourth of July weekend, statewide law enforcement officers will keep their eyes out for impaired drivers. Through Monday, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), Colorado State Patrol (CSP) and local law enforcement agencies will conduct the Fourth of July DUI enforcement period to prevent impaired drivers from endangering themselves and others on the road. CDOT is also introducing a new campaign, Take Some Time, to encourage the use of smartphone breathalyzers as a way to prevent impaired driving.
So far in 2020, of the 215 fatalities on Colorado roads, 66 fatalities, or 31 percent, have involved an impaired driver. During the Independence Day DUI enforcement period, 73 law enforcement agencies will increase patrols. During last year's enforcement period, 311 DUI arrests were made.
"The Fourth of July is a moment when, together, we celebrate our country. While everyone is eager to get out and celebrate over the holiday weekend -- especially this year -- we have a duty to keep ourselves and each other safe at the same time," said CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew. "We tend to see more impaired driving around summer holidays like the one coming up, and this year it is imperative that we all do our part to end that dangerous trend. The simple things we do to stay safe--wearing masks, social distancing, or getting a sober ride--are the fine margin between a fun holiday and a preventable disaster."
During the recent Summer Blitz enforcement period, 89 law enforcement agencies arrested 397 impaired drivers on Colorado roads from June 14-24. Compared to the 585 motorists cited for impaired driving during the same period in 2019, this was a decrease in total arrests. Among the participating law enforcement agencies, Colorado Springs, Denver and Loveland police departments reported the highest DUI arrests.
"Summer holidays are a reason to celebrate safely and responsibly," said Colonel Matthew Packard, chief of CSP. "Planning a sober ride home beforehand ensures that you won't endanger yourself or others on the road. Law enforcement will always be on the road, so remember to drive sober or not at all."
Starting this weekend, Coloradans can expect to see CDOT's latest DUI prevention campaign across the state on billboards, buildings, in liquor stores, and on social media reminding people to wait the appropriate amount of time between consuming alcohol and driving.
CDOT's new Take Some Time campaign aims to educate and raise awareness of the time it takes for a person's BAC to return to zero after consuming alcohol.
The Fourth of July also marks the start of another partnership between CDOT and BACtrack(r), a leading personal breathalyzer company. CDOT is teaming up with BACtrack to offer Colorado residents the chance to buy a personal breathalyzer for 50 percent off in an effort to make breathalyzers more accessible, educate Coloradans about blood alcohol content (BAC) levels, and ultimately reduce impaired driving.
This discount will be available through September 15, or while supplies last. Colorado residents can visit codot.bactrack.com to purchase either the BACtrack Mobile Pro, Trace Pro, C8, or C6.
"We're excited to continue this partnership with CDOT to make breathalyzers more accessible to Coloradans," said Keith Nothacker, founder and CEO of BACtrack. "This exclusive discount is made possible because of CDOT and BACtrack's shared values: safety, building awareness about alcohol consumption and impaired driving, and providing resources to make responsible decisions."
BACtrack's ZeroLine(r) technology estimates how long it will be before a person's BAC returns to zero after drinking. ZeroLine is featured in the C8 model, and also in the BACtrack app, which is compatible with the Mobile Pro and C6.