Drugged Driving, DUI, and DWAI in Colorado: What is the Difference?

There are various terms used to describe offenses related to driving under the influence, however, the penalties associated with each are more or less the same. In this post we take a look at the key points that differentiate them.

“Drugged Driving” in Colorado

There is no separate crime of “drugged driving”. This term is essentially used to differentiate between driving under the influence of drugs versus alcohol.

Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) in Colorado

A driver may be convicted of DWAI in Colorado if evidence establishes that the driver operated or attempted to operate a vehicle while he or she was under the influence of alcohol and/or drug(s) and as a result the driver’s ability to safely operate a vehicle was less than it would ordinarily have been. This can be triggered if a breath or blood test reveals an alcohol concentration of at least .05% but less than .08%.

Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in Colorado

A driver may be convicted of DUI in Colorado if evidence establishes that the driver operated or attempted to operate a vehicle while he or she was under the influence of alcohol and/or drug(s) and as a result his or her ability to safely operate a vehicle was “substantially” impaired. This can be shown if a breath or blood test shows an alcohol concentration of at least .08%, or if a blood test shows five or more nanograms of active tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

DUI and DWAI are Both Serious Offenses That Carry Significant Penalties

Depending on the number of past DUI and/or DWAI convictions from any jurisdiction, drivers convicted of DWAI may face up to one year in jail and up to $1,500 in fines. Though it’s considered a more serious offense, the penalties for a DUI conviction are similar.

Contact A Brighton DUI Defense Attorney

Contact attorney John Anderson at (303) 880-7994 today to discuss your DUI charge. Our firm will provide you with a comprehensive look at your case, what you can expect, and what steps are available to find a resolution. We also assist clients in Arvada, Aurora, Brighton, Commerce City, Federal Heights, Strasburg, Thornton, Westminster, and Bennett areas.