Memorial Day weekend DUI enforcement cites 322 drivers

June 3, 2019 -

While many Coloradans spent the Memorial Day weekend with family and friends, law enforcement agencies across the state worked overtime to apprehend impaired drivers and keep our roads safe. The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and Colorado State Patrol (CSP) joined 105 law enforcement agencies across the state from May 24 through May 28 for The Heat Is On Memorial Day impaired driving enforcement period.

During the five-day enforcement stretch, 322 impaired drivers were arrested for suspected impaired driving, an increase from the 301 arrests made over the same period in 2018. DUI enforcement is a key component of CDOT’s Whole System Whole Safety approach to reducing deaths and injuries on Colorado’s roads. Last May, there were 19 impairment-related fatalities on Colorado’s roads.

“Impaired drivers are a significant safety risk across our transportation network not only to motorists but also pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists,” said Shoshana Lew, Executive Director of CDOT. “It’s a risk that is entirely preventable, which is why rigorous enforcement and robust education are so important to eliminating such drivers from our system.”

Among the 102 participating agencies, the Colorado Springs Police Department (32 arrests), Denver Police Department (30 arrests) and El Paso County Sheriff’s Office (23 arrests) recorded the highest arrest totals. Visit to view all arrest results throughout Colorado. CSP troops made 39 DUI arrests.

“The number of impaired drivers arrested over Memorial Day weekend is an ongoing reminder of the risk impaired drivers impose to our state. Make sure you and the people around you are not getting in a vehicle unless it’s with a sober driver,” said Col. Matthew Packard, Chief of the CSP. “The Heat Is On enforcement periods help stop impaired drivers from putting both themselves and others in danger, thereby potentially saving lives.”

An average of 60 impaired drivers are arrested for DUI in Colorado every day. The Colorado blood-alcohol limit for a Driving Under the Influence (DUI) charge is 0.08 percent or higher, and for a Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) charge, it is 0.05 percent or higher. First-time DUI offenders can be punished with up to one year in jail, license suspension and thousands of dollars in fines.

The Heat Is On will return on June 14 for the 10-day Summer Blitz enforcement period.


To heighten safety awareness, CDOT recently announced its Whole System — Whole Safety initiative. This project takes a systematic statewide approach to safety combining the benefits of CDOT’s programs that address driving behaviors, our built environment and the organization's operations. The goal is to improve the safety of Colorado’s transportation network by reducing the rate and severity of crashes and improving the safety of all transportation modes. The program has one simple mission—to get everyone home safely.



CDOT has approximately 3,000 employees located at its Denver headquarters and in regional offices throughout Colorado, and manages more than 23,000 lane miles of highway and 3,429 bridges. CDOT also manages grant partnerships with a range of other agencies, including metropolitan planning organizations, local governments and airports. It also administers Bustang, the state-owned and operated interregional express service. Governor Polis has charged CDOT to further build on the state’s intermodal mobility options.