Mothers Against Drunk Driving, or better known as MADD, maybe the cause of the sudden and rapid decline of male auto deaths nationally. Let’s walk through some of the evidence to support this claim.
The chart above in the auto deaths of males and females from 1975-2012. The chart in itself is pretty telling. While both males and females saw a decline in auto mobile deaths this can be explained by a number of contributing variables. Over time drivers are driving safer cars, on roads with greater safety features and enforcement measures all designed to help lower auto deaths. What is noticeable different about these two groups is while women remained relatively consistent, hovering around the 10,000 mark (either slightly above or slightly below) males saw a significant decrease in deaths.
There are few reasons for this, most noticeable in this chart, the creation and launch of MADD. MADD launched in 1980 to promote awareness about drinking and driving. According to the CDC about 81% of all DUI suspects arrested are male. So men are more likely to drink and drive, increasing the numbers of their auto fatalities. If you look from 1975-1980 there was an almost annual increase of the number of men killed in car accidents, up until of course 1980 when the trend reversed and began a steep and steady decline.
It is important to note not to confuse correlation with causation. This post is not meant to suggest MADD is solely responsible for the decline male auto accident deaths, but it certainly merits further discussion and exploration.