Hitting the High Points at 420 Celebrations: CDOT Educates Marijuana Users with “Slow-Speed Chase”

April 20, 2016 - Traffic Safety - DENVER — People around Denver today may think they witnessed a police chase, only much, much slower.

CDOT, in an effort to raise awareness of the dangers and consequences of driving high, will stage a “Slow-Speed Chase” with two cars outfitted with safety messages.

The first vehicle, resembling a police cruiser, will follow close behind another vehicle covered with bright marijuana leaf designs. The cars will circle Civic Center Park from 2 to 3 p.m., and then visit Fiddler’s Green Amphitheater for the Snoop Dogg concert from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Both vehicles are wrapped with messages meant to educate marijuana users on the hazards of driving high. Messages include: “Hot Box = Hot Pursuit”; “No Strain = Safe Driving”; “Marijuana Impairs Perception of Time, Distance and Speed”; and “Your Car is Faster Than You Think.”

To download B-roll from the “Slow-Speed Chase,” visit — bit.ly/slowspeedchase. B-roll will be available at 2 p.m.

“Legal marijuana is relatively new to Colorado, and not everyone understands the dangers behind driving high,” said Sam Cole, Safety Communications Manager at CDOT. “According to our surveys, those who drove within two hours of consuming marijuana did so on seven of the past 30 days. That presents a danger not only to themselves, but also other road users.”

In addition to being eye-catching, CDOT hopes the vehicles will help dispel common myths around marijuana-impaired driving, such as:

  • Driving high isn’t illegal — Not true. Driving under the influence of marijuana is illegal and will lead to an arrest and carries the same penalties as an alcohol DUI citation.
  • Driving high makes you a better driver — Not true. Marijuana impairs reaction time, judgment, motor skills, and perception of time and distance.
  • Certain strains are safe to drive on — Not true. All strains of marijuana and consumption methods can impair driving.
  • Medical marijuana users can drive high — Not true. Driving high is driving high.

In 2014, 58 drivers (8 percent) involved in fatal crashes tested positive for marijuana at a level above the legal limit. CDOT will continue to address all forms of impaired driving, including alcohol, drugs and prescription medication, to decrease crashes and fatalities on Colorado roads. CDOT urges marijuana users to arrange safe transportation anytime they choose to consume.

CDOT created the Drive High, Get a DUI campaign to inform drivers about the dangers of driving under the influence of marijuana, with the goal of reducing the number of drug-related DUIs, traffic crashes and fatalities. For more information on marijuana impaired driving, visit DriveHighDUI.com.