When thinking of Thanksgiving, many things come to mind; such as food, family, blessings, maybe even a pleasant memory. But does “dangerous” come to mind? Probably not.
Did you know that the National Safety Council estimates that about 515 people may die on U.S. roads this Thanksgiving holiday? That is the most deaths estimated for the Thanksgiving holiday period since 2007. According to the American Automobile Association, it is estimated that more than 53.4 million people will travel this year for Thanksgiving, with the majority of those choosing to travel by car. Car travel has the highest fatality rate in the U.S. for unintentional injury deaths. Alcohol is also a factor adding to the holiday’s high fatality rate. During the Thanksgiving Day weekend (Wednesday evening through Sunday afternoon), about 29% of fatalities that occur are caused by the alcohol-impaired driver.
While this holiday may include car travel and possibly alcohol, making simple choices, such as wearing your seatbelt and having a designated driver can keep you much safer. So, while you’re gobbling up your meal this Thanksgiving, decide to drink responsibly, and as always make sure to wear your seatbelt. It could possibly save your life.
Quick Tips for Holiday Travels
AAA estimates there will be 48.7 million travelers this Thanksgiving holiday weekend starting today, November 23, 2016 through Sunday, November 27, 2016. For those of you traveling on highways and byways, here are a few helpful safety reminders.
Before you leave:
- Check your tires are properly inflated and that your tire tread is healthy (no bald spots).
- Be sure to pack an emergency kit: a flashlight, blankets, jumper cables, a first aid kit, drinking water, non-perishable snacks, and a cell phone.
- Buckle up. Make sure you and all your passengers are properly secured in an approved and appropriate seat belt and/or child passenger restraint system.
On the road:
- Obey the posted limit signs. Speed limits are set for your safety. Also, you’ll save a little money with better gas mileage.
- Avoid unnecessary lane changes. Remember, frequently changing lanes to pass other vehicles increases your risk of having a collision. If you do pass, remember to pass on the left and look for the other vehicle’s headlights in your rearview mirror before you return to your lane. For large trucks you want to see the cab of the truck in your rearview mirror before going back into the lane.
- No drinking and driving. If you have been drinking alcohol, don’t drive. If you plan on drinking, set up a designated driver before you start.
Have a Happy and Safe Holiday Season!