Yesterday, we brought you 5 states with the laxest DUI prevention efforts according to MADD. But what about the states that put up the strongest dui prevention measures? MADD’s report also gave special recognition to those states making the highest efforts in preventing drunk driving with a 5-star rating. So which states do you really want to avoid getting behind the wheel after a few drinks?
Utah (5 stars) – Utah is kind of a no-brainer. Utah is notoriously stringent and conservative in their lawmaking, and DUI approaches are no exception. Utah earns stars for mandatory ignition interlock devices for all first-time offenders, the (prolific) use of sobriety checkpoints, an ALR law on the books, special enhancements for DUI involving child endangerment and the use of no-refusal events. Utah has also taken great pains to prevent underage drinking, going so far as to institute a state-wide ad campaign.
Arizona (5 stars) – Like Utah, Arizona is notoriously conservative in state law and politics. As a result of tightening up of DUI laws and increased enforcement efforts, Arizona has recently experienced a 46% drop in DUI-related fatalities. Arizona receives stars for requiring ignition interlock devices of all convicted offenders, the frequent use of sobriety checkpoints and no-refusal events, an ALR law and increased penalties for DUI involving child endangerment.
Illinois (5 stars) – Like Arizona, Illinois has also experienced a marked decrease in DUI related fatalities due to increased restrictions and enforcement. According to MADD, much of this can be attributed to the requirement for ignition interlock devices for all offenders, and stepped-up law enforcement activities.
Kansas (5 stars) – Kansas only recently passed legislation requiring ignition interlock devices to be installed in the vehicles of all DUI convicted offenders. The move came in response to a regular annual increase in DUI related deaths, compared with the national average decrease. With stepped up enforcement and stricter legislation, Kansas is well situated to make a big dent in their annual DUI related accidents and death statistics.
Nebraska (5 stars) – Nebraska is also a member of the 5-star club, having recently passed legislation to tighten up their existing DUI prevention and penalties roster. As one of the lesser populous states in the United States, Nebraska hopes to eventually bring down its DUI deaths to none.
Special Mention: Florida (4 stars) – Our own home state of Florida may not be a member of the 5-star contingent, but lawmakers and law enforcement are certainly making efforts to get there. Sporting all but the mandatory ignition interlock devices for first-time offenders, Florida is certainly not a DUI-friendly state.