MADD and State Farm Survey Shows Teens Riding with Drinking Drivers

Friends Don’t Let Friends Ride with a Drinking Driver

MADD and State Farm Insurance recently conducted a survey of adolescents (15-20) to determine the frequency and their attitudes of riding with a drinking driver1:

  • About 1 in 3 youth surveyed (ages 15-20) have been a passenger with a drinking driver at least once in the past year.
  • 1 in 4 youth are willing to ride with a driver who has been drinking.
  • 3% have ridden with a drinking driver 10 or more times in the past year
  • Who was the drinking driver they were riding with?
    • 22% a friend under the legal drinking age
    • 35% a friend over the age of 21
    • 28% a parent/guardian
    • 13% another family member
  • Over 60% believe their friends have been a passenger with a drinking driver in the past year, but only 20%have intervened to keep their friend(s) from getting in a car with a driver who had been drinking.

New research from Pennsylvania State University’s Department of Biobehavioral Health2 shows that youth play a lead role in influencing a friend’s choices to ride with a drinking driver. The stronger students think their friends will disapprove of them riding with a drinking driver, the less likely they will actually do it.

That’s why MADD is asking teens this month to take to social media and #ProtectUrFriends. By snapping a selfie with their friends, they are sending a clear message to their friends that in addition to not drinking before 21, getting in the car with a drinking driver is never okay. Research shows this powerful message could save a teens life.

This October, MADD is also encouraging teens to download its teen booklet, which contains tips to help them resist peer pressure and take a stand against underage drinking. And as a bonus, every one who downloads the teen booklet in October will be entered to win weekly prizes and one grand prize — an Apple Watch Sport edition.