Arizona has been bragging of late. Headlines have been announcing that Scottsdale is the best city in the country for driving, and Tucson second best. Gilbert, Mesa and Chandler are also in the top six.
The survey, performed by the financial site WalletHub, rated cities according to a number of factors that motorists judge make a city good or bad to drive in: ownership and maintenance costs, traffic conditions, safety, and auto availability and maintenance accessibility.
In working out how safe a city was to drive in, the survey took into account, among other factors, the strictness of DUI laws. By that measure, Arizona did well: it rated number 1 in the US for thoroughgoing drunk driving laws, according to a previous WalletHub survey.
In fact, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) gives Arizona its highest rating – 5 stars – for taking the most important anti-drunk-driving measures:
- Ignition interlocks for all drunk driving offenders, including first offenders
- Sobriety checkpoints
- Administrative license suspension (i.e. suspension immediately upon DUI arrest)
- Child endangerment law (against driving drunk with a minor in the car)
- No refusal of a breath test allowed
That means that these cities in particular and Arizona in general are not good places for drunk drivers to do their thing.
Of course, drunk driving laws were not the biggest factor in this particular survey – gas prices were given four times as much weight, for example. Arizona also rates highly for traffic infrastructure and low-cost auto maintenance, which help make those cities hospitable for motorists.
In any case, Arizona has some well-earned chest thumping to do. And those who are considering driving under the influence should probably find another state, or better yet, a designated driver.