WASHINGTON D.C. — Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) urges everyone celebrating Cinco de Mayo on Sunday to designate a non-drinking driver to get them home safely. One-third of all drunk driving crashes on May 5 involve a drunk driver, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Over the past five years, 270 people have died in drunk driving crashes during Cinco de Mayo, according to NHTSA.

“With Cinco de Mayo falling on a Sunday this year, MADD is especially concerned about the number of people who might be heading out for an all-day celebration,” said MADD National President Helen Witty, whose 16-year-old daughter Helen Marie was killed by a drunk- and marijuana-impaired driver while rollerblading on a bike path near her home. “We want everyone to have a safe and fun time, and that must include a plan for getting to and from the festivities by designating a non-drinking driver. That could be rideshare, public transportation, a taxi or a non-drinking friend — just please have a plan.”

Drunk driving is the leading killer on America’s roads, claiming the lives of almost 11,000 people in 2017. And the numbers are going in the wrong direction. Since 2014, the number of people killed in drunk driving crashes has increased 9 percent. In addition, the increasing threat of drivers combining both marijuana and alcohol leads to greater impairment and a greater risk of getting into a crash.

“As a mother who lost her daughter to a drunk and marijuana-impaired driver on a beautiful, sunny afternoon, I represent the thousands of drunk driving victims who never thought a tragedy like this would happen to them. Don’t risk your life or the lives of others. Impairment begins with the first drink. Establish a transportation plan before you leave home,” Witty said.


About Mothers Against Drunk Driving
Founded in 1980 by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to end drunk driving, help fight drugged driving, support the victims of these violent crimes and prevent underage drinking. MADD has helped to save nearly 380,000 lives, reduce drunk driving deaths by more than 50 percent and promote designating a non-drinking driver. MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® calls for law enforcement support, ignition interlocks for all offenders and advanced vehicle technology. MADD has provided supportive services to nearly one million drunk and drugged driving victims and survivors at no charge through local victim advocates and the 24-Hour Victim Help Line 1-877-MADD-HELP. Visit or call 1-877-ASK-MADD.