A 30% increase in only three years sounds astounding. Sure, there are more and more people moving into Colorado, but the Colorado Department of Transportation says that cannot be the only reason for the sharp increase.

Everybody loves driving; especially in a state where things are spread out, like ours. It's not like we live in big cities like New York or Chicago, where cabs, trains, and buses are prevalent ways to get around; we need to drive. However, we need to be more diligent when it comes to driving SAFELY.

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In a recent press release by the Colorado Department of Transporation (CDOT), they show statistics stating that in 2017 alone, 663 people were killed involving an automobile. Whether it meant the driver, passengers, pedestrians, motorcyclists, and cyclists. That number is 30% higher than the 2014 statistics. Weld County had the 3rd most fatalities for 2017 behind El Paso County and Adams County.

CDOT states that it comes down to people making poor choices. It's hard to argue that-  Impaired driving, distracted driving, and people not wearing seatbelts top the list. 211 Coloradoans died in automobile accidents in in 2017 due to not wearing seatbelts.

All of the listed causes seem pretty easy to avoid: Do not drink and drive; do not text/use your phone while driving; DO put on your seatbelt.

CDOT notes that with 3.8 million licensed drivers in Colorado, one in every 33 Colorado drivers will be in a crash this year. Odds of surviving a crash improve immensely if motorists buckle up, watch their speed, avoid mixing driving with drugs or alcohol and stay off their phones.

You should be seeing a lot more campaigns about driving-safe awareness as CDOT awarded $3.5 million to non-profit organizations, law enforcement, and local government agencies to conduct programs aimed at reducing crashes.  Many of these programs address alcohol-related crashes, which account for about one-third of fatalities in Colorado.