Alcoholism in the state of Colorado is a major concern that affects many of the residents of the state, and represents a wide-ranging number of social consequences, thus the need for a greater number of quality alcohol rehab programs to be available there. A variety of alcohol treatment approaches are available in and around Colorado, but it can be confusing if an individual seeking help does not have a sufficient amount of professional guidance. There are inpatient alcohol rehabilitation facilities in Colorado that offer residential programs, where the individual can reside at the alcohol treatment center and receive around the clock professional support. Outpatient drug rehab is where an individual from Colorado that is being treated for an alcohol addiction can visit the clinic at various intervals for several hours at a time.

While many people that are seeking alcohol rehab in Colorado for an alcoholism problem may wish to choose local outpatient alcohol treatment in order to stay close to home, not everyone will benefit from this limited level of care. For an individual from Colorado with a moderate to serious alcoholism problem, residential inpatient alcohol rehab may be the best alcohol rehabilitation option. In conclusion, the type of alcohol rehab that an individual will need depends on the severity of their alcohol addiction as well as the resources that are available in and around Colorado.

Alcohol rehabilitation generally begins with detoxification, which is the process of safely getting alcohol out of your system; the alcohol treatment center will then follow up with individual or group counseling, as well as skills and training courses to help prepare the individual for returning to Colorado and living an alcohol-free lifestyle. The primary goal of any quality alcohol rehab facility should be to enable the individual from Colorado to successfully achieve a state of lasting sobriety.


Colorado alcohol related information and statistics are provided by the US Dept. of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Conference of State Legislatures, 2004. The table below shows the total number of traffic fatalities (Tot) for Colorado, alcohol related fatalities (Alc-Rel) and fatalities in crashes where the highest BAC in the crash was 0.08 or above (0.08+). It is important to note that the Colorado drunk driving statistics, as shown below, include data from individuals in Colorado who were in an alcohol-related crash, but not driving a motor vehicle at the time. The U.S. Department of Transportation defines alcohol-related deaths as "fatalities that occur in crashes where at least one driver or non-occupant (pedestrian or pedalcyclist) involved in the crash has a positive Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) value."

Fatalities

Tot

Alc-Rel

%

0.08+

%

1982

668

422

63

374

1983

646

418

65

356

1984

608

374

61

315

1985

579

316

55

279

1986

603

360

60

308

1987

591

291

49

249

1988

497

227

46

195

1989

527

247

47

222

1990

544

260

48

216

1991

543

280

51

245

1992

522

263

50

225

1993

559

235

42

210

1994

586

282

48

237

1995

645

304

47

257

1996

617

252

41

218

1997

613

229

37

197

1998

628

244

39

214

1999

626

229

37

194

2000

681

268

39

225

2001

741

328

44

281

2002

743

314

42

276

2003

632

246

39

221

2004

665

259

39

225

2005

606

244

40

213

2006

533

207

39

177

2007

554

199

36

170

2008

548

202

37

173

2009

465

178

38

158



2003-2004 Colorado Alcohol Related Issue: Percentage % Ranking

Alcohol Abuse or Dependence

9.36%

[11th of 51]

Alcohol consumption > Binge drinkers

17.2%

[11th of 52]

Alcohol consumption > Casual drinkers

62.1%

[9th of 52]

Alcohol consumption > Heavy drinkers

4.7%

[29th of 52]

Alcohol related traffic fatalities

259

[26th of 51]

Alcohol related traffic fatalities (per capita)

0.555 per 10,000 people

[25th of 51]

Alcohol related traffic fatalities, as a percentage

39%

[22nd of 51]

Alcohol Use in the Past Month

58.78%

[7th of 51]

Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2003-2004, Office of Applied Studies 2003-2004 and the MADD Official Website statistics 2004

 When is a driver considered to be legally drunk in Colorado?

  • Non-commercial drivers age 21+ are considered legally drunk in Colorado when their blood alcohol level is .08 or more.
  • Drivers of commercial vehicles are legally drunk in Colorado when their blood alcohol level is .04 percent or greater. In Colorado, school bus drivers are commercial drivers.
  • Drivers under 21 are legally drunk in Colorado when their blood alcohol level is .02 or more.

Penalties for Drunk Driving in Colorado

  • First-time offenders in Colorado face a term of imprisonment in a county jail of five days to one year. They must also pay a fine of $300 to $1,000 and perform 48 to 96 hours of public service work. Generally, a first-time offender's Colorado driver's license will be revoked for three months. The offender can, however, request that the license be revoked for not less than 30 days, followed by a suspension period, so that the total revocation and suspension period equals six months. If the offender's BAC was .17 or above, the probationary license is conditioned on the use of an ignition interlock device for one year. The time served under a probationary license is not credited against the one-year mandatory interlock restriction.
  • Second-time offenders in Colorado, regardless of the date of the first offense, face a term of imprisonment in a Colorado county jail of 90 days to one year. They must also pay a fine of $500 to $1,500 and perform 60 to 120 hours of public service work. The driver's license revocation period is one year.
  • Third-time offenders in Colorado, regardless of the date of the previous offense, are subject to a term of imprisonment in a Colorado county jail of 70 days to one year. They must also pay a fine of $450 to $1,500 and perform 56 to 120 hours of public service work. The driver's license revocation period is one year.
  • Persons who have been convicted of DUI three or more times within a seven-year period in Colorado are "habitual offenders," and their licenses will be revoked for at least five years.

Ignition Interlock

  • Any person who has been convicted of DUI on two or more occasions within a five-year period in Colorado must hold a restricted license which requires the use of an interlock ignition system for at least one year.
  • Any person whose license was revoked in Colorado because the person's BAC was .17 or more must hold a restricted license and use an interlock ignition system for at least one year.
  • A "persistent drunk driver" is required to hold an interlock restricted license for at least two years. A "persistent drunk driver" is any person who has been convicted of or has had his or her driver's license revoked for two or more alcohol-related driving offenses; a person who continues to drive after a driver's license restraint has been imposed for one or more alcohol-related driving offenses; or a person who drives with a BAC of .17 or more.
  • Habitual offenders in Colorado(persons who have been convicted of DUI three or more times within a seven-year period) are not eligible to participate in the ignition interlock program.

Commercial Drivers

In addition to other penalties that may be imposed under Colorado's DUI laws, a commercial driver who commits a first DUI while driving any vehicle will be disqualified from driving a commercial vehicle for one year. If, however, the offense was committed while the driver was operating a commercial vehicle and transporting hazardous materials, the disqualification period is three years. If a commercial driver is convicted of a second DUI while driving any vehicle, the offender will be disqualified from driving a commercial vehicle for life, which may or may not be reduced to a period of 10 years.

Drivers Under 21

In addition to other penalties that may apply, a driver under 21 who commits a DUI in Colorado with a BAC in excess of .05 but less than .08 will have his or her driver's license revoked for three months for the first offense. If the underage offender's BAC was not more than .05, the revocation period is at least 30 days to be followed by a suspension period so that the total period of revocation and suspension is three months. Second-time offenders in Colorado receive a six-month driver's license revocation. Third and subsequent offenders in Colorado receive an one-year driver's license revocation.

What is Colorado's Civil Liability Statute?

Under Colorado law, a drinking establishment will be civilly liable to an injured person when the person can prove that the establishment willfully and knowingly sold alcohol to a person under 21 or to a person who was visibly intoxicated and that the sale or service caused the injury. Under this statute, the civil action must be filed within one year after the sale or service. Additionally, damages cannot exceed $150,000. Each year, however, this damage cap is adjusted for inflation. This action can only be filed by a third person who was injured because a tavern in Colorado sold alcohol to a minor or a visibly intoxicated person. In other words, the action cannot be brought by the person to whom the alcohol was sold or served or by his or her estate, legal guardian, or dependent.

What is Colorado's Social Host Law?

A social host is civilly liable to an injured person if the injured person can prove that the social host knowingly served alcohol to a person under 21 or knowingly provided an underage drinker with a place to drink alcohol and that the injury was caused because of the minor's intoxication. Under this statute, the civil action must be filed within one year after such service. Additionally, damages cannot exceed $150,000. Each year, however, this damage cap is adjusted for inflation. This action can only be filed by a third person who was injured because a social host knowingly furnished alcohol to a person under 21 or provided an underage drinker with a place to drink. In other words, the civil action cannot be brought by the underage drinker, his estate, legal guardian, or dependent.

What is Colorado's "Damages for Selling Liquor to a Drunkard" Statute?

Under this statute, every husband, wife, child, parent, guardian, employer, or other person who suffers personal injury, property damage, or a loss of financial support as a consequence of the intoxication of a habitual drunkard, has a right of action against the person who sold or gave liquor to and caused the intoxication of the habitual drunkard, so long as the plaintiff provided written notice to the defendant not to sell or give liquor to the habitual drunkard.

Criminal Penalties in Colorado for Selling Alcohol to a Visibly Intoxicated Person

Under Colorado law, it is a crime to sell alcohol to a visibly intoxicated person. This crime is punishable by three months to one year imprisonment, a fine of $250 to $1,000, or both.

Criminal Penalties for Selling Alcohol to a Minor in Colorado

In Colorado, it is a crime to sell alcohol to a minor. This crime is punishable by six to 18 months imprisonment, a fine of $500 to $5,000, or both. If, however, the minor in Colorado was under 18, the offender faces two to six years in prison, followed by a three-year mandatory parole period, plus a fine between $2,000 and $5,000.

Criminal Penalties for Giving Alcohol to a Minor in Colorado

In Colorado, it is a crime to give alcohol to a minor. This crime is punishable by six to 18 months in prison, a fine of $500 to $5,000, or both. If, however, the minor was under 18, the punishment is two to six years in prison, followed by a three-year mandatory parole period, plus a fine of $2,000 to $5,000.

Driver's License Suspension for Providing Alcohol to a Minor in Colorado

Any person, other than an employee of a business licensed to sell alcohol in Colorado, who is convicted of providing alcohol to a minor faces a driver's license suspension of at least six months.

  • Contact Us
  • Facts
  • An average sized woman would have to drink 10-14 beers or glasses of wine within a relatively short period of time to reach the lethal blood alcohol concentration of 0.4%.
  • Alcohol can increase the sedative effects of medications that cause drowsiness, including cough and cold medicines and drugs for anxiety and depression.
  • In the US alone, alcohol is responsible for over 17,000 deaths on the roads due to individuals driving while under the influence of alcohol. This accounts for 41% of all USA road accidents.
  • During the Whiskey rebellion, federal officials who tried to collect taxes on whiskey were sometimes tarred and feathered.