David Strickland, Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, recently announced that he will be stepping down from the agency. MADD profoundly thanks Strickland for his exemplary service to the country, for his leadership within the highway safety community, and for his tireless commitment to saving lives and preventing injuries on our nation’s roads.
Administrator Strickland served as honorary chairman of MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® and helped continue to emphasize drunk driving as a national priority.
Strickland recently announced the Seamless and Significant Initiative, which calls for new vehicle-based technologies to save lives. Included in this initiative is the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety, or DADSS, program which seeks to develop in-vehicle technology that could passively and unobtrusively determine if a driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level is at or above .08 — the illegal level in all 50 states. If the driver is at or above a .08 BAC, the car would be rendered inoperable.
Strickland often referred to the DADSS program as this generation’s “moon shot” and has been instrumental in advancing this public-private partnership between the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Automotive Coalition for Traffic Safety. As part of the last highway reauthorization bill, the Congress fully authorized the DADSS program as well as the other components of MADD’s Campaign, including an ignition interlock incentive grant program and continuation of the annual drunk driving crackdowns known as Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.
In addition to his work at NHTSA, Strickland was also named a MADD Congressional Staffer of the Year for his work in Congress to help stop drunk driving.
We wish him all the best in his future endeavors. Strickland is a longtime friend to MADD, and we appreciate his great service to our mutual cause.