NGA to Assist 13 States in Strengthening Policies Against Impaired Driving

Columbus, Ohio, Summit Kicks Off Technical Assistance to States

To address the grim and growing toll of impaired driving, the National Governors Association is working with 13 states on efforts to strengthen policy approaches needed to address driving under the influence of alcohol, opioids, other drugs and combinations of the two. 

The NGA technical assistance to participating states kicks off with a two-day summit in Columbus, Ohio, May 2-3, and continues with ongoing technical assistance, information and support from staff at NGA Solutions: The Center for Best Practices. 

During the summit, governors’ senior staff and other state officials will receive technical assistance from NGA staff and state and national experts about evidence-based safety policies and practices to prevent and respond to impaired driving. State officials will gain knowledge about the risks of impaired driving and share best practices in countering both drug- and alcohol-impaired driving. By sharing lessons learned, participating states help further state innovation and evidence-based policies, programs and practices. 

The states selected are: Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, Virginia and Washington. 

This project is funded through a grant from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 10,874 fatalities in motor vehicle traffic crashes in 2017 involving drivers above the legal limit for alcohol. This totaled 29 percent of all traffic fatalities for the year. The number and percentage of alcohol-involved fatal crashes was up from the prior year. 

An average of one alcohol-impaired-driving fatality occurred every 48 minutes in 2017.