In 2006, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) launched the Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving. It’s a report they produce every year that compares the drunk driving laws of all 50 states, and ranks the states according to their efforts to eliminate drunk driving and the associated fatalities. This year’s report, for 2018, doesn’t shine a very benevolent light on our beloved state of Michigan.
According to Angel Harris, the victim services manager for MADD Michigan, “Michigan is the second worst state in the country when it comes to enacting drunk driving laws that are proven to save lives.” And how has MADD come to the conclusion that we’ve done such a poor job of preventing drunk driving here in Michigan? Let’s take a look…
MADD uses a 5 star system for assigning points to states.
MADD awards stars to states who adopted laws that line up with their zero tolerance approach. This includes:
- Conducting regular sobriety checkpoints
- Insisting on ignition interlocks for all drunk driving offenders
- Introducing enhanced penalties for people who drive drunk with minors in the vehicle
- Not allowing suspected drunk drivers to refuse to participate in certain activities, including refusing roadside breath tests and sobriety tests.
- Revoking driving privileges from the moment someone is arrested for drunk driving.
Based on these parameters, MADD seems to think that Michigan isn’t doing enough to stop drunk driving, despite the fact that drunk driving incidents in the Great Lakes state have actually been getting lower every year.
Based on MADD’s star system, Michigan ranks as second worst in the US!
Michigan doesn’t enforce regular sobriety checkpoints other than during certain DUI awareness campaigns (like March madness). We also allow drivers to refuse to participate in roadside sobriety tests and breath tests if they choose to. And for that reason, we are not considered “harsh enough” on drunk driving. Although if you talk to the thousands of convicted drunk drivers behind bars in our state, they’ll probably beg to differ on that opinion.
In order to do better, according to MADD’s report, we would need to:
- Pass an all-offender ignition interlock law,
- Legalize sobriety checkpoints and require that they happen monthly (at a minimum)
- Make ignition interlock devices available to first-time offenders upon arrest,
- Pass a law making OWI Child Endangerment a felony,
- Expedite warrants for suspected drunk drivers who refuse BAC testing, and
- Enact administrative license revocation.
Being arrested for a DUI in Michigan in no joke, despite MADD’s opinion!
If all you knew about Michigan’s drunk driving laws was what you read in a MADD report, you’d assume that we simply couldn’t care less about saving lives, or reducing our DUI count. But that couldn’t be further from the truth! Michigan takes drunk driving very seriously. Don’t believe us? Try getting arrested for a DUI here in the Great Lakes state and see just how seriously your case is taken by the prosecutor’s office!
Which brings us to our final point – you getting arrested for a DUI! So if you, or perhaps a loved one, has been arrested for drinking and driving in Michigan, call The Kronzek Firm at 866 766 5245. Our skilled DUI defense attorneys have decades of experience successfully fighting for the rights of people accused of drunk and drugged driving in Michigan. We can help you too!