History of MADD
Chances are, you’ve heard of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, but you might not have known that the history of MADD shows a 33-year track record of education, prevention, and improved highway safety. Established in 1980, the organization was created to educate drivers across the nation on the perils of drinking and getting behind the wheel.
What started as a small group of mothers determined to put an end to drinking and driving has grown into hundreds of chapters in the USA, Canada, England, and beyond. It’s surprising to think that one individual created such a large organization, but MADD was the outcome of Candace Lightner’s determination to put an end to DUI after losing her 13 year old daughter to a drinking driver who was not only drunk at the time of the crash, but also had two prior DUI convictions on his record before the incident.
For the past 33 years, MADD has been behind much of the progress made in the education of drivers and the prevention of drinking and driving. The term ‘accident’ is no longer used in relation to a drunk driving incident – instead the word ‘crash’ is used, because an incident caused by the deliberate action of drinking and driving is not considered an accident. A few of the other significant milestones MADD has achieved was to reduce the BAC level where an individual is considered inebriated from .10 to .08, as well as push through a Zero Tolerance legislation in all 50 states.