Roads: Paving, Motos & Potheads
CDOT Launches Road Safety Campaigns
Paving continues in Leadville Today as the $5 million Colorado Department of Transportation’s “US 24 Leadville Overlay & ADA Ramps” project resumes its schedule on a late summer Monday morning. Crews have been stepping it up, hoping to stay ahead of unpredictable fall weather and the waning patience of the local community as seemingly every roadway, back alley and side street is under-construction.
On Saturday, historic Harrison Avenue was a clustered clog of road crews, locals attempting to find some back way to run a simple errand, and thousands of leaf-peepin’ tourists who were either traveling to or through America’s highest city on the last official weekend of the summer. Remember, there are weeks ahead on this project, so please continue to be considerate of road and flagging crews.
CDOT Launches Motorcyclist Campaign
It’s not a milestone you want to see, especially in an already off-the-rails year. But, unfortunately, last week Colorado recorded its 100th Motorcycle Death for 2020.
It has been a difficult year, even for motorcyclists on Colorado roadways. With fatal motorcycle crashes up 12% over last year, a new partnership has been formed to address the concerning trend by reminding motorists to watch for motorcyclists. The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and the automotive repair and maintenance business, Grease Monkey made the announcement last week.
“Since January Colorado has seen a startling increase in motorcyclist fatalities and the state is expected to exceed the number of fatalities from last year,” said Darrell Lingk, CDOT Director of the Office of Transportation Safety. “With the fall riding season approaching and many riders currently enjoying the warm weather, we are urging drivers to use caution and be aware of motorcyclists. Drivers, please remember to look twice and save a life.”
CDOT Motorcycle Facts and Statistics:
- To date, there have been 100 motorcycle fatalities in 2020. This is up 12% from 89 at the same time last year.
- In 2019 there was a total of 103 motorcycle fatalities.
- Motorcyclists makeup 23% of all deaths on Colorado roadways yet represent just 3% of the vehicles.
- Of the 100 motorcyclist deaths in 2020, the following counties are noteworthy:
- The top three counties with the most motorcycle deaths are El Paso (17 fatalities), Adams (nine fatalities), and Jefferson (nine fatalities).
- Northern Colorado
- Larimer and Weld Counties have both had seven fatalities each.
- Southern Colorado
- El Paso has had 17 fatalities and Pueblo has had seven fatalities.
- Western Slope
- Mesa County has had six fatalities. Delta, Garfield, Gunnison, Montrose and Rio Blanco have each had one fatality.
- Northern Colorado
CDOT motorcycle safety efforts are part of CDOT’s Whole System – Whole Safety campaign which aims to reduce fatalities and injuries and “Bring everyone home safely.”
Pot-Impaired Drivers Take Note
With the latest data indicating an increase in marijuana-involved fatal crashes, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) has launched a new campaign this month called “Uncomfortable High.”
According to state data, fatal crashes involving marijuana have been on the rise since 2017 after falling the year before. In 2017, 33 drivers in fatal crashes tested positive for five nanograms or higher of Delta-9 THC — the psychoactive component of cannabis — with 49 testing positive in 2019.
CDOT’s “Uncomfortable High” campaign stems primarily from feedback the agency received from Coloradans that, especially among heavy cannabis users, many people think it’s safe to drive high. By asking the audience to consider other professionals using marijuana while on the job, the campaign aims to give consumers pause to consider the similar risks of driving high. The ads remind Coloradans that “lives are at stake every time you get behind the wheel.”
CDOT’s “Uncomfortable High” Campaign
CDOT is continuing to partner with the cannabis industry statewide to help educate consumers about the laws and risks of driving under the influence of cannabis and providing resources and tools to help them make responsible decisions. To learn more about CDOT’s new campaign and view creative materials, visit DriveHighDUI.com.