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DENVER — The number of uninsured drivers on Colorado streets and highways is growing.  It’s information you need to know to help protect yourself and your family.

The insurance industry says odds are you’ll be in three or four crashes during your driving years … everything from a fender-bender to a multi-vehicle pile up.

In Colorado, the odds are also high the other driver won’t have insurance.

“Nationally we’re seeing the number of people driving without insurance go down but here in colorado we’re seeing the reverse of that trend,” says Carole Walker of the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association.

Statistics show one in six Colorado drivers does not have insurance. That’s the ninth highest rate in America. Experts believe the high number can be attributed to things like high cost of insurance or bad driving histories.

“Some may make a decision, ‘I can’t afford it. I’m going to take my chances,'” Walker says. “Some may have a driving record … too many DUIs … where they say, ‘I’m going to take my chances.'”

17-year-old Juan Dominguez Palomino was killed by a hit-and-run driver in Aurora in March. The suspect, 40-year-old Olivos Gutierrez, did not have insurance. Police say anecdotally that about one-third of their hit-and-run cases involve uninsured drivers.

“If you have insurance you’re more likely to stay there and take responsibility because that’s why you have insurance,” Walker says.