Editorial: No excuse for DUI in Eagle Co. | VailDaily.com

Editorial: No excuse for DUI in Eagle Co.

Vail Daily Editorial Board
Vail Co, Colorado

Did you have a glass of wine with your dinner? Did you drive home ” or did you catch a cab rather than risk a night in jail?

That latter option is a good one for staying out of trouble, but it can cost you.

High Mountain Taxi has just bought Vail Valley Taxi, which means the $20 ride from one side of town to the other likely won’t get any cheaper.

The only other option now will be the valley’s Hummer taxi. (Insert your indignant response here.)

There was a noticeable lack of enthusiasm when this story broke, which may be because everybody has gotten used to the fact that the alternatives to driving over the limit are somewhat limited.

As a result, we get drunk drivers all over the place. So far in 2007, local police have made 52 DUI arrests during “enforcement periods” like holiday weekends, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation.

We make no excuses for those who choose to drive drunk ” even the most expensive taxi fare is a bargain compared to the cost of a DUI arrest, a car accident or worse. And the cost in terms of potential harmful or fatal accidents is immeasurable. But the reality is the roads would be a lot safer for all of us if more could be done to keep drunken revelers off the road.

Vail Police occasionally set up breathalyzer stations near the parking garages. Those who’ve had a few to drink can verify just how drunk they are before hitting the road. That’s one great preventative measure that can keep a few partiers from getting behind the wheel of a car.

Vail’s in-town bus service runs late at night, but for those who leave Vail to go to points downvalley, there aren’t many affordable options. Eagle County Transit stops running its buses out of Vail around midnight during the winter. Later bus service also could help get drunken drivers off the road.

Those options and more all cost serious money. In some communities, though, the bars and restaurants who profit from customers who drink are helping to pay for programs like these. There’s no reason why that idea couldn’t work here.

In any case, the cost and inconvenience of keeping drunks off the road is worth it.

” Evan Gibbard for the Editorial Board

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