Colorado officials launch new campaign against impaired driving

If you feel different, you drive different.

That’s the message behind Colorado’s newest anti-impaired driving campaign launched this week in cooperation between CDOT, the Colorado State Patrol, the Colorado Task Force on Drunk and Impaired Driving and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The campaigned is meant to spread the word about the dangers of drug-impaired driving, and to remind motorists not to take the risk.

“We launched this new public education campaign to make sure everyone knows that driving under the influence of drugs impairs your ability to assess whether you are okay to drive,” said Heidi King, NHTSA deputy administrator. “We’re reminding all drivers that ‘if you feel different, you drive different. Drive high, get a DUI.’ Because whether you’re driving under the influence of alcohol, marijuana or opioids, it’s all impaired driving.”

More than 60 people are arrested in Colorado for impaired driving every day for violations including alcohol, illegal, prescription and over the counter drugs. Under Colorado law, drivers with five nanograms of active THC in their blood can be prosecuted for driving under the influence, even if it’s medically prescribed. The repercussions can also be steep, including thousands in financial impacts, incarceration, the loss of your license or worse.

Ongoing education campaigns have shed light on the risks of drunk driving in recent years, but with the legalization of recreational marijuana and the emergence of the opioid epidemic officials are leading a charge against drugged driving.

“Eliminating drugged driving on our roadways is an important and long-term goal for CDOT,” said Michael Lewis, CDOT’s executive director. “We welcome NHTSA’s efforts to educate the public about the dangers of driving while impaired by drugs, and we are committed to the success of those efforts. This is a shared priority as we move Colorado toward zero deaths on our roadways.”

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