(COLO) – Over a three-year period, from 2019 through 2021, Colorado State Patrol troopers have investigated over 1,750 fatal and injury crashes determined to be caused by impaired drivers. Year after year numbers expands during warmer months with the top month for impaired crashes being July.
“Last year troopers investigated 14 fatal car crashes and an additional 42 with serious injuries during the month of July that were caused by impaired drivers. We are imploring drivers who have taken the risk of taking substances and driving in the past to change their behavior,” stated Chief Matthew C. Packard, Colorado State Patrol. “Driving intoxicated is literally rolling the dice with your license, your freedom and your life.”
By looking at crash data statistics over the last three years, the Colorado State Patrol has discovered that the majority of at-fault impaired drivers involved in a crash they investigated were wearing their seat belts (60.5%).
“When you pause to consider that the majority of impaired drivers involved in a serious injury or fatal crash make the choice to wear a seatbelt for their own personal protection but don’t make a choice to plan a sober ride for the protection of others, you begin to appreciate the selfishness of this behavior,” remarked Chief Packard.
According to the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), since 2019 there has been a 44% increase in the number of fatalities involving an impaired driver within our state. While impaired driving is a serious concern in every community, alcohol and drugged driving fatal and injury crashes investigated Colorado State Patrol were the highest in the following five counties in 2021:
- El Paso
Colorado State Troopers are continuing to take a low tolerance approach to lane violations while running a yearlong campaign called "Stay in Your Lane." This campaign is designed to remind people to control their lane position based on their current driving environment. It also aims to bring attention to three of the most common and avoidable behaviors that contribute to lane violations - driving aggressively, driving distracted or driving while impaired.
ABOUT THE COLORADO STATE PATROL
Since our origin in 1935, the Colorado State Patrol (CSP) has focused on preserving human life and protecting property within our communities. Our 1,100 members embody the core values of Honor, Duty, and Respect in their daily jobs. In addition to our expertise in motor vehicle safety on the state’s roadways, the CSP is responsible for the Governor and other dignitaries’ protection, commercial motor vehicle enforcement, hazardous materials, homeland security, communications, investigative services, criminal interdiction, community education, aviation operations, and more.