Colorado DOT’s ‘Ballpark Guessing’ Aims to Get Everyone Safely Home

The difference between outstanding and blah sometimes comes in subtle ways. In this powerful video posted recently by the Colorado Department of Transportation, the excellence is obvious – if you look.

The video takes place at a baseball stadium. The host interviews people, asking them how much alcohol they have consumed. Then, she asks each person whether they would be willing to drive. Then, she has them use a personal breathalyzer to test their blood alcohol level.

The reactions are amazing, and for me quite emotional. The look of realization on the face of one man is even profound. He was clearly not expecting the results he got. When asked, he admitted that he had planned to drive home that night, “but I’m not going to drive now.”

 

The people who participated in this video were clearly not professional actors, but are most likely mothers and sons, sisters and fathers. And, undoubtedly, they were people affected in some way by distracted or impaired driving.

The video’s call to action is “Before You Go, Know.” It encourages people to purchase personal breathalyzer devices.

“When driving impaired, your chances of getting in a crash are 400 times higher. Don’t rely on a ballpark guess.” – CDOT

Every state in some way is trying to discourage impaired driving. For instance, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign will gear up now that football season is approaching.

But Colorado DOT’s approach has long been focused on helping people make better choices. Years ago it launched one of the first DOT-sponsored mobile apps, “R-U-Buzzed,” that estimated a person’s blood alcohol level based on their weight, the amount they had to drink and the amount of time that had passed since drinking.

Based on the looks from the people who participated in the video, that approach could be helping more people get home safely.

 

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Author: Lloyd Brown

I am the director of communications for the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. I enjoy running marathons and triathlons, playing guitar and spending time with family. My professional interest is in how social media and new technology shapes the communication relationship between government and the general public. I have a Master’s degree in Communications and Leadership from Gonzaga University in Spokane and a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Washington State University.

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