CDOT Debuts “What Will YOU Lose?” Campaign Featuring Real Colorado DUI Offenders
February 9, 2017 – Traffic Safety – More Than 1,300 Felony DUI Cases in 2016
Join us inside at CDOT Headquarters (4201 E Arkansas Ave, Denver, CO 80222) today at 3 p.m. to hear from Andrea Milholm and Travis Wiebers, two of the Colorado DUI offenders featured in the campaign. Each will be available for interviews. CDOT Spokesperson Sam Cole will be available for interviews throughout the day.
STATEWIDE — Impaired driving is shunned in our society, yet every single day drivers get behind the wheel drunk or high and risk the safety of everyone around them. Some may not consider the consequences, assuming “it will never happen to me.” But the fact is that impaired drivers do get arrested — an average of 77 every day in Colorado — and the consequences are severe.
In an effort to reduce impaired driving, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is launching What Will YOU Lose?, a campaign featuring DUI offenders speaking about what they’ve lost because of their DUI conviction and urging others not to make the same mistake. What Will YOU Lose? features real Coloradans, not actors, who share their stories in hopes of preventing other people from driving impaired. Some offenders are currently serving time in the Colorado Department of Corrections, while others not incarcerated have lost their licenses, jobs and more.
A key focus of the campaign is the new felony DUI law. In 2015, Colorado enacted the law, making an individual’s fourth DUI conviction automatically eligible for a Class 4 felony charge. The goal of the law is to greatly increase consequences for repeat DUI offenders and remove them from Colorado’s roadways. Some offenders that participated in CDOT’s campaign were charged as felons for driving impaired.
“It’s one thing to hear about the consequences of a DUI from CDOT, but it’s even more powerful to hear directly from people who have experienced those consequences firsthand,” said Sam Cole, CDOT Communications Manager. “A DUI can happen to anyone who chooses to get behind the wheel after even just a few drinks. For the campaign, men and women offenders of all ages volunteered to speak on camera describing how they lost their right to drive, lost connections with family, lost their careers and much more.”
Beginning this week, videos featuring the DUI offenders are airing on Colorado broadcast TV and online through connected TV platforms. CDOT is also placing posters in 40 bars across the state.
The Colorado Department of Corrections, Office of Behavioral Health, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), DUI-prevention advocates and treatment centers throughout the state are helping spread the message, sharing CDOT educational materials with details on the new law and other DUI consequences.
“I was just like any 25-year-old girl who would go out and party with friends. I had a good job and never thought that I would be the one to get a DUI,” said Andrea Milholm, a DUI offender featured in the campaign. “It’s tragic, humiliating and embarrassing that it had to take consequences like this to teach me the dangers of drunk driving. I hope my story will connect with someone similar. Take it from me — a DUI will stay with you forever.”
Other quotes from the DUI offenders:
“I’ve lost relationships, freedom, my job. Its been earth-shattering.” — David M., Trinidad Correctional Facility, Repeat DUI Offender
“I didn’t believe it would happen to me. All the stories about other people that it happens to, I wasn’t that guy.” — Anthony R., Fremont Correctional Facility, Homicide with DUI
“I was on top of the world and one quick decision to drink and drive completely tore my life apart and turned it upside down.” — Travis W., Former Firefighter, DUI Vehicular Assault
“The word felon follows me everywhere I go.” — Andrea M., DUI Vehicular Assault and Vehicular Homicide
CDOT’s What Will YOU Lose? campaign is aimed at raising awareness of Colorado’s felony DUI law and the consequences of getting a DUI, not only for repeat offenders, but for those who have never had a DUI in their life. For more information, visit HeatIsOnColorado.com.
Source: Colorado Department Of Transportation