Staying Safe on the Road As You Travel This Thanksgiving
This Thanksgiving, millions will hit the roads as they head over to their destinations to spend time with family and friends. In fact, Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel times of the year. This also means more people are out on the roadways increasing the potential for more car accidents. Statistically speaking, Thanksgiving weekend is one of the most dangerous times to be out on the road.
Why Thanksgiving Weekend is Dangerous
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), during the 2016 Thanksgiving weekend (6 p.m. Wednesday Nov. 23 to 5:59 a.m. Monday Nov. 28) 341 people were killed in auto accidents nationwide. Nearly half of those who were killed, 49 percent, were not wearing their seatbelts. Nighttime proved even more deadly with 55 percent of Thanksgiving weekend accidents occurring at night. Research shows that wearing a seatbelt is one of the simplest and most effective ways to stay safe when you’re traveling, particularly during the holidays when roadways are extremely busy.
What You Can Do to Stay Safe
- Drive at a safe speed. Speeding causes nearly a third of all car accident fatalities. Stick to the speed limit and drive at a speed that is safe for the traffic and roadway conditions. Look out especially for bad weather, construction activity on roadways or poor road conditions such as potholes.
- Avoid driving while distracted. Pay attention to the roadway and avoid distractions such as talking on the cell phone or texting. Other activities such as eating, drinking or even talking to a passenger while driving could also prove distracting.
- Always wear a seatbelt. There is no question that seatbelts can save lives. Be sure to buckle up and place children in age-appropriate car seats. More than 11,600 lives have been saved by child car seats since 1975.
- Do not drive drunk. Always designate a sober driver to take you home. If you have imbibed, it is best to stay at your host’s home until you are sober. If you see someone who is driving erratically on the roadway, be sure to report them to the authorities.
- Don’t drive if you are tired or drowsy. Fatigued driving is often underestimated when it comes to driving hazards. Thanksgiving is one of the most common times of the year when drivers are vulnerable to fatigue and drowsiness. Make sure you get enough rest before you get on the road. Take turns with others so everyone gets sufficient rest.
All of us at Bisnar Chase wish you a safe and happy Thanksgiving weekend!