The Economic Impact of a DUI

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(COLO) – Colorado State troopers are on the lookout for drivers who exhibit behaviors associated with impairment; in 2023, troopers arrested over 4,100 motorists engaging in this risk-taking behavior. In Colorado, one-third (3.2%) of traffic fatalities involve a driver who is impaired.

“If the thought of killing someone doesn’t get through to you, consider the financial impact this crime will have on your life,” stated Matthew C. Packard, chief of the Colorado State Patrol. “Costs go well beyond the fines assessed through the court process, and if you value your time, plan on devoting hours to getting your life back on track.”

A recent calculation finds that the average first-time DUI in Colorado costs $13,530. You will be responsible for paying court costs, towing and vehicle storage fees, ignition interlock rental fees, and much more! Plus, anticipate your auto insurance to jump up significantly.

This does not factor in the hours a person will devote to completing all the requirements, such as probation, alcohol and drug therapy, attending a victim impact panel, and complying with the ignition interlock device in their vehicle. If their job has policies regarding convictions or rules specific to impaired driving, it could mean the loss of employment.

People of all ages are arrested for impaired driving in Colorado, and this crime, like many others, can stick with you for multiple years after occurring. According to NHTSA the age with the most DUIs is 21-24, but last year 30-39 year olds surpassed Colorado State Patrol arrests for impaired driving. Drivers in their 20s and 30s are historically the top two age groups year over year for Patrol impaired driving contacts. 

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Troopers continue to take a low-tolerance approach to the top fatal crash factors, including lane violations, impaired driving and speeding while launching a yearlong campaign called “Drive Safe.” This campaign reminds people to reflect on everything they love and value and plan a sober ride when planning to celebrate.


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.