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Uber 4/20
Tracey Breeden of Uber talks about the safe ride program the car service is proving on 4/20, Wednesday, the unofficial marijuana holiday. Looking on are Sgt. Rob Madden of the Colorado State Patrol, Fran Lanzer of MADD Colorado and Shannon Fender of Native Roots. (Photo by Joey Bunch/Colorado Politics)
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Uber connects pot provider and Colorado State Patrol with 4/20 effort

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How mainstream is Colorado marijuana? Tuesday one of the state’s largest dispensaries, Native Roots Colorado, stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the Colorado State Patrol, Mothers Against Drunk Driving and Uber on a joint project.

Rather than driving high on 4/20 — Thursday’s unofficial holiday for pot lovers — those celebrating in Denver can save $4.20 off their Uber fare to and from the events in Civic Center park.

To get the deal, Uber passengers should use the code SAFE420 on their Uber app.

“This is first of its kind,” said Tracey Breeden, a spokeswoman for the car service, said at Tuesday morning announcement in Lincoln Park outside the Capitol. “… This is really special and it’s really important.”

Indeed, Sgt. Rob Madden of the Colorado State Patrol said since 2015 troopers have written about 1,500 citations for driving impaired by pot, accounting for about 17 percent of the state’s impaired driving violations.

“Driving under the influence of anything that will impair you is dangerous, and we can do something about it,” Madden said, referring to catching a ride instead of catching a charge.

Fran Lanzer, the executive director of MADD Colorado, added, “Marijuana DUI crashes, like drunk-driving crashes, are both tragic and entirely preventable.

“If you’re planning on celebrating 4/20, also make a plan to get home safe.”

Shannon Fender, the director of public affairs for Native Roots Colorado, said the company, with 18 dispensaries, is also an industry leader in integrity and responsibility.

“And we are committed to improving the lives of those in the communities we serve,” she said. “Colorado has proven that legalizing adult-use marijuana not only works but creates additional positive community impacts. We want to continue this trend and so we encourage our customers, out of state visitors and Coloradans to always plan a ride before consuming marijuana.

“This week, tens of thousands of people will visit Colorado to celebrate cannabis culture and legalization. Driving under the influence of marijuana puts drivers, passengers, the traveling public and first responders in harm’s way and can result in serious criminal charges. We hope that everyone will be safe, plan a ride, and have a great 420.”

Editor’s note: Shannon Fender is the fiancee of Colorado Politics senior statehouse reporter Peter Marcus.

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