Distracted Driving Enforcement Begins Friday

April 7, 2016 - Traffic Safety - STATEWIDE — Preliminary data indicates that 69 people were killed in distracted driving crashes in Colorado in 2015.

Intending to reduce this number, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and Colorado State Patrol (CSP) are joining forces to conduct a statewide distracted driving enforcement period from Friday, April 8, through Sunday, April 10.

“Texting and driving is illegal for all Colorado drivers, regardless of age,” said Darrell Lingk, Director of the CDOT’s Office of Transportation Safety. “It may seem like a harmless glance at your phone, but a AAA study indicates that the cognitive distraction from using your phone can last as long as 27 seconds after finishing a distracting task — incredibly too long while driving.”

Colorado drivers can expect to see more troopers on the roadways this weekend looking for distracted drivers during the enforcement period.  

“Law enforcement officers would much rather issue citations for those driving distracted now, than arrive at the scene of a crash caused by distracted driving later,” said Scott Hernandez, Chief of the Colorado State Patrol. “We cite drivers for reckless and distracted driving year-round, not only during our enforcement periods, and we hope this weekend reminds Coloradans of that fact.”

CDOT has also asked Facebook users to submit their own anti-distracted driving messages for possible use on highway message signs throughout the state. CDOT will put the submission to a public vote, and the winning messages may be displayed on highway signs in April.

CDOT’s Drop The Distraction campaign educates motorists about the dangers of distracted driving. This summer, CDOT will launch a statewide, high-visibility awareness campaign to decrease distracted driving. For more information about distracted driving in Colorado, visit codot.gov/safety/distracteddriving.