Law enforcement agencies across Colorado will rev up their DUI patrols this weekend, coinciding with springtime gatherings and high school proms.
The Larimer County Sheriff's Office will have increased DUI saturation patrols in various spots across the county. The goal is to decrease the number of impaired drivers while simultaneously educating people about the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, according to a news release.
"Happy occasions like prom and graduations are known to sometimes involve underage drinking or marijuana smoking, and this can result in tragedy," LCSO wrote in its release.
The efforts coincide with Colorado State Patrol's "Zero Fatalities, Zero Tolerance" campaign, which ramps up Friday night through Monday morning. Troopers will use every resource available to prevent fatal crashes across the state and show the positive effects of increased statewide patrols.
Compared to the first three months of 2013, this year has seen a 12.8 percent increase in DUI arrests, 17.2 percent increase in speeding citations and 14.9 percent increase in cited seat belt violations, CSP reported.
The number of fatal crashes statewide has dropped 25.5 percent as a result of the increased patrols, CSP said.
Being charged with DUI costs more than $10,000 on average, statistics from the Colorado Department of Transportation show. Included in that cost are court fees, hiked insurance premiums and education classes.
"It is critical that parents keep the lines of communication open with their kids when it comes to talking about the dangers of underage drinking, marijuana consumption and driving while impaired," LCSO said.