Travel Alerts

July 16, 2019

Click It or Ticket enforcement underway

Seat belt enforcement to focus on rural Colorado

 

STATEWIDE — Starting Monday, July 15, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), the Colorado State Patrol (CSP) and local law enforcement agencies began a week-long Click It or Ticket seat belt enforcement period focusing on rural areas of Colorado. The enforcement period will run through Sunday, July 21. In 2018, five of the six counties with the lowest seat belt use in Colorado were in rural areas, according to a CDOT study. Those included:
  • Cheyenne (65%)
  • Delta (75%)
  • La Plata (76%)
  • Montezuma (77%)
  • Chaffee (77%)
Colorado’s seat belt use rate is 86 percent, below the national average of 90 percent. The seat belt enforcement effort supports CDOT's Whole System ­— Whole Safety initiative and the agency’s vision to reduce the number of deaths and injuries on our roadways. In 2018 there were 632 traffic fatalities on Colorado roads, including pedestrian, motorcyclists and occupants of passenger vehicles. 
In 2017, 410 occupants in passenger vehicles were killed on Colorado roads. Of those, 206 fatalities occurred in rural areas, with 118 (57.3%) of those involving unbuckled drivers or passengers. Statewide in 2017, an estimated 70 lives could have been saved if everyone in Colorado had buckled up. In 2018, 220 unbuckled drivers and passengers were killed in crashes in the state, accounting for more than half of the 416 total passenger vehicle deaths.
“Choosing to wear a seatbelt can be a lifesaving decision.  Drivers and passengers wearing seatbelts are much more likely to survive an accident, yet last year more than half of passenger vehicle deaths were unbuckled drivers,” said CDOT Director Shoshana Lew. “Please remember to buckle up, and to remind fellow drivers and passengers to do the same.”
This year, CDOT went on a Reasons Road Trip to capture stories from Coloradans in Weld, Adams and El Paso counties — the counties with the highest number of unbuckled fatalities in 2017 — about why they buckle up.
CDOT’s hope is that stories from fellow Coloradans will encourage those who don’t wear seat belts to think of a reason to buckle up, and ultimately change their behavior. Coloradans can share their reasons for wearing a seat belt at codot.gov/safety/seatbelts.
To launch the enforcement effort, CDOT hosted an event at UCHealth Memorial Hospital in Colorado Springs where local law enforcement participating in the enforcement effort and medical service professionals shared their experiences responding to crashes and the importance of seat belts. To further convey the challenges in responding to rural crashes, an UCHealth LifeLine helicopter was on hand — air medical transport is often the quickest response mechanism in rural areas of the state.
The July rural enforcement is the last of three Click It or Ticket enforcement periods in 2019. During the same Click It or Ticket July rural enforcement last year, 938 unrestrained drivers and passengers were issued citations in rural communities across Colorado.
"Unfortunately, there are people who continue to believe they do not need to fasten their seatbelt when getting in a vehicle, many of whom are in rural communities who think they don't need to buckle up because there is less traffic or they are only traveling a short distance.  The reality is, 52% of collisions occur within a 5-mile radius from home, and 69% occur within a 10-mile radius of home," said Col. Matthew Packard, chief of the CSP. "We hope every citation issued is a reminder to always buckle up every time you enter a vehicle."
 
COLORADO’S SEAT BELT LAWS
  • Adults — Colorado has a secondary enforcement law for adult drivers and front-seat passengers. Drivers can be ticketed for violating the seat belt law if they are stopped for another traffic violation.
  • Teens — Colorado’s Graduated Drivers Licensing (GDL) law requires all drivers under 18 and their passengers, regardless of their age, to wear seat belts. This is a primary enforcement, meaning teens can be pulled over simply for not wearing a seat belt or having passengers without seat belts.
  • Children — Colorado's Child Passenger Safety law is a primary enforcement, meaning the driver can be stopped and ticketed if an officer sees an unrestrained or improperly restrained child under age 16 in the vehicle.
Fines for not buckling up in Colorado start at $65, and parents or caregivers caught with an improperly restrained child can receive a minimum fine of $82.
From 2013 to 2017, 30 children aged zero to eight were killed in passenger vehicle crashes in Colorado. Among these, more than half were in an improperly used or installed car seat — or no car seat at all. Parents and caregivers can learn more about Colorado child passenger safety laws, recommendations and recalls at CarSeatsColorado.com.
 
ABOUT CLICK IT OR TICKET
Click It or Ticket is a nationwide campaign from NHTSA. Since Click It or Ticket was introduced in Colorado in 2002, statewide seat belt use has increased from 72 percent to 86 percent. For more information about seat belt safety and enforcement citation numbers, visit SeatBeltsColorado.com.
 
WHOLE SYSTEM. WHOLE SAFETY.
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.
 
ABOUT CDOT
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.

July 15, 2019

CDOT hosting telephone town hall on July 17 to discuss transportation in South-Central and Southwest Colorado
 
DURANGO — The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is hosting a telephone town hall on Wednesday, July 17 to have a conversation with residents about transportation needs and improvements in Southwest Colorado. Part of the “Your Transportation Plan” statewide planning effort, the telephone town hall will allow residents of the following counties to speak directly with and provide feedback to CDOT: Alamosa, Archuleta, Chaffee, Conejos, Costilla, Dolores, La Plata, Mineral, Montezuma, Montrose, Ouray, Rio Grande, Saguache, San Juan and San Miguel counties. 
Beginning at 5:30 p.m. on July 17, south-central and southwest Colorado residents with landlines will be called through an automated system and invited to take part in the telephone town hall. Residents who have a cell phone or do not receive a call can dial 855-710-6230 to participate.
A text-to-register feature is also available for cell phones. Residents can text CDOTSW to 828282 to receive a call to their cell phone when the telephone town hall begins. Residents can also listen live online by visiting Vekeo.com/coloradodot.
Telephone town hall participants will have an opportunity to share their thoughts about transportation needs and ideas for improvements with their local transportation commissioner and key CDOT personnel. The feedback CDOT hears from Southwest Colorado residents will impact the development of Colorado’s next transportation plan.
Telephone town halls for other areas of the state will be held in August.
To learn more about Your Transportation Plan, take a quick survey, and find out about the statewide outreach and engagement being conducted, visit YourTransportationPlan.com. For direct access to the survey where Coloradans can provide input on transportation trends and issues that impact them the most, identify specific areas that need attention on an interactive map, and give feedback on CDOT’s transportation vision and goals, visit YourTransportationPlan.MetroQuest.com
Telephone Town Hall Details:
Region — Southwest Colorado (Alamosa, Archuleta, Chaffee, Conejos, Costilla, Dolores, La Plata, Mineral, Montezuma, Montrose, Rio Grande, Saguache, San Juan and San Miguel counties)
Date and Time — July 17, 2019 at 5:30 p.m.
How to Participate — CDOT will call Southwest Colorado landlines at 5:30 p.m. on July 17 and invite residents to participate. Residents who have a cell phone or do not receive a call can dial 855-710-6230 to participate or sign up to receive a call on their cell phone by texting CDOTSW to 828282. Residents can also listen live online by visiting Vekeo.com/coloradodot.
 
WHOLE SYSTEM. WHOLE SAFETY.  
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.
 
ABOUT CDOT
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.
 
Bob Wilson
Statewide Communications Manager 

CDOT Region 5/southwest & south-central Colorado announces 2019 construction projects

Projects emphasize safety initiative for all travelers

 SOUTHWEST & SOUTH-CENTRAL COLORADO ― The Colorado Department of Transportation announces that almost $85 million will be spent on highway construction and traffic improvement projects in southwest and south-central Colorado this year. Every project will carry out components of CDOT’s new initiate: Whole System. Whole Safety.

“CDOT’s priority is to bring everyone home safely ― that implies every member of the traveling public and every CDOT employee who works on our highways,” said CDOT Executive Directory Shoshana Lew. “Safety for and on our roads depends upon newly built systems and improving the efficiency and safety of infrastructure that’s already in place.”

Regional projects being constructed each have benefits that are aimed at helping reduce traffic injuries and deaths.

“Our objective is to improve the safety of Colorado’s entire transportation network,” continued Lew. “By investing in these improvements, we can enhance safety conditions for those traveling in the southwest and south-central regions and ultimately reduce the rate and severity of crashes.”

REGIONAL CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS

The 30 projects taking place throughout southwest and south-central Colorado will involve work on hundreds of miles of roadway, six bridges, four culverts, and several intersections. Work includes new construction and the repair of existing infrastructure.

“The projects set for our areas will accomplish of a variety of needs by building new road features or enhancing existing infrastructure,” explained CDOT Traffic and Safety Program Engineer, Julie Constan. “New construction may include lane widening, new concrete safety barriers and the building of multimodal features such as new ADA sidewalks and ramps, and paths. Work on existing structures may include asphalt overlay, chip seal, guardrail replacement, and highway striping.”

To view a list of all Region 5 projects, click here: <2019 TRAFFIC WATCHERS>

ECONOMIC IMPACTS

Region 5’s 30 construction projects total approximately $84.63 million, taking place in 16 counties. The projects employ 350 region-wide CDOT employees in southwest and south-central Colorado. The projects also frequently utilize the services of local engineering firms, construction companies and subcontractors which collectively have a workforce of hundreds of professionals and skilled laborers.  

WHOLE SYSTEM. WHOLE SAFETY.

To heighten safety awareness, CDOT recently announced its Whole System. Whole Safety. initiative. This program takes a systematic statewide approach to safety combining the benefits of CDOT’s programs that address driving behavior, 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 safety conditions for those traveling by all transportation modes. The program has one simple mission - to get everyone home safely.

REMEMBER: SLOW FOR THE CONE ZONE

The following tips are to help you stay safe while traveling through maintenance and construction work zones.

  • Do not speed in work zones. Obey the posted speed limits.
  • Stay Alert! Expect the unexpected.
  • Watch for workers. Drive with caution.
  • Don't change lanes unnecessarily.
  • Avoid using mobile devices such as phones while driving in work zones.
  • Turn on headlights so that workers and other drivers can see you.
  • Be especially alert at night while driving in work zones.
  • Expect delays, especially during peak travel times.
  • Allow ample space between you and the car in front of you.
  • Anticipate lane shifts and merge when directed to do so.
  • Be patient!

 KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

Travelers are urged to “know before you go.” Gather information about weather forecasts and anticipated travel impacts and current road conditions prior to hitting the road. CDOT resources include:

For more information about individual projects and to obtain updates as project work progresses, contact Region 5 Communications Manager: lisa.schwantes@state.co.us or 970-749-2015.

ABOUT CDOT 

CDOT has approximately 3,000 employees located 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, and administers Bustang, the state-owned and operated inter-regional express service.  Governor Jared Polis has charged CDOT to further build on the state’s inter-modal mobility options. 


Interface US160 US50 US550 proj update June 2019_r4.jpg


**PROJECT OPERATIONS ALERT**

Re-striping Operations to take place throughout CDOT’s Region 5,
Southwest & South-Central Colorado
SOUTHWEST & SOUTH-CENTRAL COLORADO – The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) has started a project to re-stripe faded pavement markings throughout Region 5, southwest and south-central Colorado.  The contractor selected for this $1,629,025 project is Innovative Marking Systems, Inc. of Grand Junction. Re-striping operations started on April 1 and will continue through the end of June. The work is weather dependent.
The re-striping project will replace and enhance highway striping and markings, providing a safer roadway and highway system for the traveling public.
“Common sense and cost effective solutions can make a big difference towards keeping people safer,” said CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew. “As part of CDOT’s Whole System, Whole Safety initiative, this project incorporates a simple but important feature: fresh, new, bright stripes that improve visibility and help drivers stay in their lane on the road.”
Highways being re-striped include:
Southwest Colorado
  • US Highway 160 from the Four Corners to Cortez, (COMPLETED)
  • US 491 from Cortez to the Utah state line, (COMPLETED)
  • US 550 from Durango to the New Mexico state line,
  • US 550 near Ridgway to Durango,
  • US 160 over Wolf Creek Pass, and from Pagosa Springs to the New Mexico State line,
  • SH 62 from US 550 to SH 141 out of Ridgway, and
  • SH 145 between Naturita and Telluride.
South-central Colorado
  • US 285 from the New Mexico state line to the Chaffee County/ Park County Line,
  • US 291 from US 50 to US 285 near Salida, and
  • US 50 near Coaldale to SH 114 near Gunnison.
TRAFFIC IMPACTS:
Travelers will encounter re-striping operations from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., on a daily basis. This is a swift moving, mobile operation. Although work zones will only be in place for a few hours, motorists are urged to use caution and watch for heavy equipment. At times, through lanes and turn lanes may be temporarily closed to traffic causing brief travel delays. Any temporary closures are to ensure the safety of the workers and the traveling public.
IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT PAINT ON VEHICLES: 
Travelers should not attempt to pass the striping truck and cross over fresh paint, as this will damage a vehicle’s finish. Please drive with patience during striping operations. The striping truck will pull over when possible to allow traffic queues to clear.
PROJECT INFORMATION:
Those with questions or comments can contact the project team at:
Other CDOT resources include:
REMEMBER―SLOW FOR THE CONE ZONE:
The following tips are to help you stay safe while traveling through maintenance and construction work zones.
  • Do not speed in work zones; obey the posted speed limits.
  • Stay Alert! Expect the unexpected.
  • Watch for workers; drive with caution.
  • Don't change lanes unnecessarily.
  • Avoid using mobile devices such as phones while driving in work zones.
  • Turn on headlights so that workers and other drivers can see you.
  • Be especially alert at night while driving in work zones.
  • Expect delays, especially during peak travel times.
  • Allow ample space between you and the car in front of you.
  • Anticipate lane shifts, and merge when directed to do so.
  • Be Patient!
ABOUT CDOT: 
CDOT has approximately 3,000 employees located 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, and administers Bustang, the state-owned and operated inter-regional express service.  Governor Jared Polis has charged CDOT to further build on the state’s inter-modal mobility options.