But the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration figures for highway deaths caused by drunken driving are just that. Compiled by Safewise.com, North Dakota and Minnesota are on a per capita list.
The worst states per capita for drunken driving fatalities are Wyoming (7.59), South Carolina (6.22), North Dakota (6.08), New Mexico (5.74) and Alabama (5.49).
The states where per capita drunken-driving fatalities are Massachusetts (1.74), Utah (1.70), Minnesota (1.52), New York (1.48) and, at the bottom of the list, New Jersey (1.38).
South Dakota was 14th at 4.02 while Wisconsin was 29th at 3.28 deaths per capita.
With the National Safety Council projecting that there will be 438 roadway fatalities and 49,900 injuries over the extended New Year's holiday weekend, the nonprofit group's president, Deborah A. P. Hersman, says, "Prioritizing safety is the best way to welcome the new year."
Hersman, former chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board, said that during December of last year 885 people died in traffic crashes involving a drunk driver.
NHTSA numbers crunched by Safewise found that Wyoming replaced Montana as the worst per capita state for drunken-driving fatalities. Montana dropped to the sixth sausage state by that standard.
Wyoming, which ranked eighth in 2016, rose to the top of the world. It was the only state among the top five that showed no decrease in the overall rate of drunken-driving fatalities.
Safeen points out that states worst, South Carolina requires jail time for first-time drunken-driving offenders, and in that case it's two days in jail.
"The majority of US states require alcohol abuse assessment or treatment after a DUI conviction, but neither is required in four out of the five states of drunken driving death," Safewise said in a statement. "Among the five states with the most drunken driving death, the average minimum for the first DUI conviction is $ 300, compared to $ 524 among the five states with the fewest drunken driving deaths."
This article was written by Ashley Halsey, a reporter for The Washington Post.