DENVER (KDVR) — The Colorado Department of Transportation said they have seen an increase in drivers consuming marijuana and getting behind the wheel, so they have a safety message this Valentine’s Day. 

CDOT and Native Roots are pairing up to share a serious message about cannabis-impaired driving. CDOT said there are misconceptions about consuming marijuana before you get behind the wheel and thinking that it does not impair your ability to drive. However, they said that’s false. 

Research shows that marijuana impairs motor skills, reaction time, lane tracking and more.  

According to CDOT data, traffic fatalities involving drivers above the legal limit for cannabis are increasing. Although alcohol is the most common cause of impairment-related crashes, drivers who tested over the legal limit of 5 nanograms of THC increased from 50 drivers in 2020 to 79 in 2021.

Impaired driving deaths increased to 278 last year, up 6% from 2021. But since 2019, those deaths involving an impaired driver have risen by almost 60%. Combinations of drugs are also a problem — 25% of the impaired drivers in fatal crashes last year had more than one substance in their blood, with alcohol and cannabis the most common co-occurring substances. 

So on this Valentine’s Day, they’re encouraging people to think of their loved ones first and not drive impaired.

If you share who you’re staying safe for Tuesday morning, CDOT will give you a fake marijuana bouquet. The goal is for the bouquet to remind you to never drive impaired. This pop-up promotion is paid for by marijuana cash tax money.  

Also, in an effort to keep people from getting behind the wheel while they’re high, Native Roots is waiving all delivery fees Tuesday. 

The marijuana delivery process also has several safety requirements.

“The workflow to make sure that the product is safe and fully compliant, we have multiple checkpoints from the point that the customer orders to the delivery. To make sure that it’s going to the right customer, that they’re getting the right amount and then even when we take it to their house, we are double checking to make sure that they passed the age requirements, that it’s a private facility and that is going to the person that it should,” said Michael Diaz-Rivera, owner of Better Days Delivery, a social equity licensee and delivery partner of Native Roots.

The event is happening from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Native Roots Dispensary on Grant Street in Denver.