State Patrol ramps up DUI enforcement as weather improves, driving increases


AURORA | Local police are buckling down on DUI enforcement across the region as temperatures climb and residents clamber to enjoy spring across the Front Range.

Colorado State Patrol and many local police departments, including Aurora’s, are ramping up their DUI patrols this month in an effort to curb intoxicated driving. The campaign spans April 2 to May 10, according to Colorado State Patrol.

“As temperatures warm and more Coloradans are vaccinated, we expect more people to be on our roadways,” Chief Matthew Packard said in a statement. “Everyone is eager to get back to normal, but this isn’t an excuse to be careless if consuming alcohol, marijuana, or other drugs. Make a plan before you consume an impairing substance. Your decision boils down to being responsible or being reckless. Never put an innocent life in harm’s way.”

Traffic counts on Aurora’s Interstate 225 are regularly surpassing pre-COVID volumes, according to Colorado Department of Transportation data from February.

Nearly three dozen people have died on Colorado roadways in an incident involving an impaired driver so far this year, according to state statistics. Last year, more than 200 people died in traffic encounters with inebriated operators, accounting for one third of all traffic deaths in the state.

Last year, Aurora police arrested 53 people during the state’s spring DUI enforcement period from April 3 through May 11. A total of 468 people were arrested across the state as a part of the effort.