Your safety is our priority in Douglas County. It’s also a shared responsibility.
According to Colorado State Patrol, Colorado saw a 6% increase in traffic fatalities caused by impaired driving last year. The second leading cause of fatal and injury crashes investigated by State Patrol so far this year is impaired driving.
This year, Colorado State Troopers, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and your elected officials want you to remember all the reasons you should make a plan for a sober ride home. Impaired driving tends to increase on weekends and holidays.
According to the 2023 data in Colorado, the most common day of the week for injury or fatal impaired crashes was Sunday from midnight to 3 a.m., which is when communities across the state will be celebrating the New Year. That’s why we’re encouraging everyone to do their part to keep our community safe.
The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office is utilizing grant funding to increase the number of officers that will be out on patrol over New Year’s. In partnership with Colorado State Patrol and the Colorado Department of Transportation, we offer these safety tips:
Plan ahead. Before heading out, make a plan for how you will get home so you won’t be tempted to later drive impaired — this could be using a rideshare program, a taxi or mass transit.
Designate a sober driver. If you live in a rural area with fewer transportation options, always designate a sober driver to bring you home safely.
Have options. If you are hosting a party, make sure to have plenty of non-alcoholic beverages and food available for your guests.
Get educated. Check out Responsibility.org’s Virtual Bar, which uses the latest science to help provide a better understanding of how different factors affect your blood alcohol content (BAC) on an individual level.
Get involved! If someone is impaired, don’t be afraid to take their keys or offer a place to spend the night. You might save a life.
Beware of poly-consumption. Combining drugs and alcohol can significantly increase impairment. DUIs include cannabis. Law enforcement is trained to detect drivers impaired by marijuana.
Make a call. Never be afraid to call a friend or family member for a ride — they will understand.
In Douglas County, we also want you to take care of your mental health. New Year’s Eve is a one-day celebration, but if you are worried about a friend or family member’s substance use, there are year-round resources in and around Douglas County.
Don’t be afraid to offer up the resources on our web page. You can also dial 988, to connect with Colorado’s mental health and substance use helpline. 988 is a 24/7 free, confidential service available to anyone in Colorado experiencing an emotional crisis. People can reach out for themselves or for someone they are concerned about, such as a friend, neighbor, or loved one.