CDOT begins St. Patrick’s Day DUI enforcement with event at Colorado Springs Irish pub

News Release

March 17, 2023 - Southeastern Colorado - Three people killed by suspected impaired drivers in El Paso County this year

Haga clic aquí para ver este comunicado de prensa CDOT empieza la campaña de DUI del Día de San Patricio con un evento en un bar irlandés en Colorado Springs en español.

Media Resource Kit for 2023 St. Patrick's Day DUI Enforcement Event

El Paso County — The weekend of green beer and cheer is almost here, and responsible Coloradans know not to throw away their luck on a DUI. From March 16–21, CDOT, Colorado State Patrol (CSP) and more than 71 law enforcement agencies are joining forces for the St. Patrick’s Day Weekend enforcement, urging Coloradans to include a sober ride in their holiday plans. Increased patrols will focus on removing impaired drivers from the roads.

El Paso County had 27 impaired driving fatalities in 2022, marking a 23 percent increase from the previous year, which had 22 fatalities involving an impaired driver.

CDOT hosted a pop-up event on March 16 at Jack Quinn’s Irish Pub, one of the stops along Lucky's St. Patrick’s Day Bar Crawl in Colorado Springs, and shared $10 Lyft credits with bar goers ahead of the holiday. An ultimate prize of a unique Lyft code worth $50 was given to one of the bar patrons. Numerous shamrock-shaped posters were scattered around the bar and will remain through the holiday weekend with festive, safe driving messages and the information to claim the Lyft code.

“Getting behind the wheel impaired by any substance puts everyone on the road at risk. Do you have a plan for a sober ride before you head out?” said Col. Matthew C. Packard, chief of the Colorado State Patrol. “The decision to drive impaired doesn't affect just you. Don't rely on luck to get you out of a DUI, or even worse, a fatal crash.”

CDOT is continuing its partnership with the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), Lyft and to offer $10 Lyft ride credits. The credits, available statewide, are valid only while supplies last and can be redeemed with the code “SPDSAFE” in the Lyft app until March 23 at 11:59 p.m. To apply the credit directly to the Lyft app from a mobile device online here. The credits are funded by a grant CDOT received from GHSA. To date, 833 rideshare credits have been used statewide over holiday periods to prevent impaired driving.

Alcoholic beverages and St. Patrick’s Day festive decorations promoting The Heat Is On enforcement period, text overlay reads "Happy St. Patrick's Day! Rideshare credits available.
Alcoholic beverages and St. Patrick’s Day festive decorations promoting The Heat Is On enforcement period, text overlay reads "Happy St. Patrick's Day! Rideshare credits available.

In 2023, there have already been 28 impaired driving related fatalities in 2023 and 912 DUI arrests during CDOT enforcement periods alone. The recent Presidents Week enforcement period concluded with 319 DUI arrests. CSP arrested 105 drivers during the enforcement period.

“Make a plan before you go out. It really is that simple with all the resources available today,” said CDOT’s Office of Transportation Safety Director Darrell Lingk. “Over 600 DUI arrests have already taken place this year and all were preventable. Don’t be the reason someone doesn’t get to go home to their family this weekend.”

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 37 people were killed in drunk-driving crashes over the St. Patrick’s Day holiday period in 2020 (6 p.m. on March 16 through 5:59 a.m. on March 18). For Coloradans hosting St. Patrick’s Day parties, make sure that all guests have a safe and sober ride home.

For yearly impaired driving crash and fatality data in Colorado, visit For local law enforcement agency plans, visit

About The Heat Is On

The CDOT Highway Safety Office provides funding to Colorado law enforcement for impaired driving enforcement, education and awareness campaigns. The Heat Is On campaign runs throughout the year, with 16 specific high-visibility impaired driving enforcement periods centered on national holidays and large public events. Enforcement periods can include sobriety checkpoints, saturation patrols and additional law enforcement on duty dedicated to impaired driving enforcement. Find more details about the campaign, including impaired driving enforcement plans, arrest totals and safety tips at More information about DUI laws in Colorado can be found at Learn more about CDOT’s dedication to keeping Colorado roads safe, including impaired driving enforcement objectives, arrest data and safety information at