MADD Rates all 50 States on Drunk Driving Laws

The report card is out. For the sixth time since the launch of our Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving in 2006, we rate all 50 states and the District of Columbia on laws proven to reduce drunk driving and save lives.

The 2019 Report to the Nation serves as a guide for supporters, state and federal lawmakers, traffic safety partners and a roadmap for those who wish to help MADD reach its ultimate goal of No More Victims.

States have the potential to earn 5 stars based on the following categories:

  • Ignition interlocks for all drunk driving offenders after the first offense
  • Conducting sobriety checkpoints, which can reduce drunk driving deaths by 20 percent
  • Administratively revoking of driving privileges upon arrest
  • Enhanced penalties for driving drunk with a child passenger
  • Expediting warrants for suspected drunk drivers who refuse an alcohol test.

This year, MADD awarded an average national rating of 3.16 out of 5 stars. This slight increase from 2.96 in 2018 reflects the passage of all-offender ignition interlock legislation in Kentucky and New Jersey in 2019, bringing the number of states with these laws to 34.

States that require these in-car breathalyzers for every drunk driving offender after the first offense saw drunk driving deaths fall by 16 percent. That is why it is MADD’s No. 1 legislative priority in states and why we’re working to improve existing interlock laws.

Only one state – Arizona – received 5 out of 5 stars in 2019. Eight other states performed well above the national average in 2019: Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, Nevada, Oklahoma and West Virginia, which each received a rating of 4.5.

Montana received the lowest rating, with just a half-star. That state has done little to improve its drunk driving laws since enacting a .08 BAC per se law in 2003. Michigan, South Dakota and Wyoming also received ratings of 1.5 stars or lower.

To learn how your state rates and why, visit

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