Mothers Against Drunk Driving, or MADD, is a nonprofit organization based in the United States and Canada that focuses to stop drunk driving. The organization releases yearly reports on cases of drunk driving and gives a rating of up to five stars for different states. The scores are given to each state and show who among them are most vigilant in implementing rules to avoid accidents and fatalities caused by drunk drivers.
The Five MADD Categories For Each State
The MADD organization uses five categories to rate the states, namely; Conducting sobriety checkpoints, Ignition interlocks for all drunk driving offenders, Creating enhanced penalties' for those who drive drunk with children in the vehicle, Participating in "no-refusal" activities for those suspected of drunk driving, and, Utilizing Administrative License Revocation for drunk driving offenders. This year, two subcategories were added to each to help states pass the strict yet effective drunk driving laws. This would allow half star ratings to improve their existing laws. This year, the state of Alabama received a 3.5 star rating. Full star ratings were given to the All-offender interlock laws and no refusal categories, but only scored half stars for sobriety checkpoints, administrative license revocation, and child endangerment categories.
Drunk Driving Fatalities Spike Up During The Holidays
The Mothers Against Drunk Driving organization chose the holiday season to release their reports due to historical data that shows an inflation of incidents between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. Last year, 973 people fatalities were caused by drunk driving during the holidays that is almost 10 percent of drunk driving cases for the whole year. 33 to 39 percent of road fatalities that have been caused by drunk driving happen before and during Thanksgiving Day and Christmas.
During the off-season, 136 crashes have been recorded from January to October in New Mexico alone, 100 people died from those crashes. The Department of Transportation reported a 36 percent increase in fatal drunk driving accidents since 2015. One incident that happened early this year involved a certain Cesar Chavez was charged with vehicular homicide and DWI or Driving while intoxicated. Three people died which includes an 18-month-old child. The 50 years old Chavez has two previous cases of DWI and is set to go on trial on 2017. These fatalities could have been avoided if only the law enforcements and state laws have been strict from the get go.
One Shot Is Not Worth One Life
The holidays are supposed to be a fun season and no one deserves to be grieving at this time of year. Most can easily get excited about drinking, especially for those who only drink liquor during occasions, but that is no reason to be complacent and forget how to be a responsible citizen. One sip of vodka can easily take the life of another; one life taken is not something worth getting drunk for.
Come Up With A Plan To Have A Great Time
If you cannot avoid the booze, come up with a plan. Get a designated driver, a responsible one that can safely take you home. Or better yet, leave your vehicle in your garage and use Uber. That way you can be confident that you can go home safely even when drunk, and help an Uber driver earn something extra for his families holidays. Like Bert Parnall, spokeman for MADD, said, "go out and celebrate, have a great time, but have a great plan."