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National Academies of Sciences: Drunk Driving is Leading Killer on Roads

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New Report Affirms MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving

WASHINGTON (January 17, 2018) — Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) applauds a new report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine that identifies drunk driving as the leading killer on our nation’s roads and a persistent public safety problem.

The report’s recommendations affirm MADD’s priorities outlined in the Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving:

  • Support law enforcement and sobriety checkpoints
  • Pass ignition interlock laws for all drunk driving offenders
  • Develop passive alcohol detection in new vehicles

“Alcohol-impaired driving remains the deadliest and costliest danger on U.S. roads today,” the report states. “Every day in the United States, 29 people die in an alcohol-impaired driving crash — one death every 49 minutes — making it a persistent public health and safety problem.” Two of MADD’s government affairs department staff, J.T. Griffin, chief government affairs officer, and Frank Harris, director of state government affairs, provided information to a National Academies of Sciences panel that led to the recommendations released today.

MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving, launched in 2006, is based on four mission prongs: Support for high-visibility law enforcement such as sobriety checkpoints, ignition interlocks for all drunk driving offenders, advanced vehicle technology such as the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS) and autonomous vehicles, and public support for these initiatives. On January 24, MADD will release our annual Campaign report rating each state on its progress in these areas.

“MADD is laser-focused on our Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving, and this scientific study tells us we are on the right track,” said MADD National President Colleen Sheehey-Church. “We are fighting for ignition interlocks for all offenders in every state and defending sobriety checkpoints, which are under siege in states like Missouri and New Hampshire. This report illustrates why we are determined to win.”

About Mothers Against Drunk Driving Founded in 1980 by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to end drunk driving, help fight drugged driving, support the victims of these violent crimes and prevent underage

drinking. MADD has helped to save more than 350,000 lives, reduce drunk driving deaths by more than 50 percent and promote designating a non-drinking driver. MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® calls for law enforcement support, ignition interlocks for all offenders and advanced vehicle technology. MADD has provided supportive services to nearly one million drunk and drugged driving victims and survivors at no charge through local victim advocates and the 24-Hour Victim Help Line 1-877-MADD-HELP. Visit or call 1-877-ASK-MADD.


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