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The Holidays Can Be Deadly on the Roads

Despite the pandemic, millions of Americans were expected to hit the road to travel to see loved ones at some point over the holidays. It likely comes as no surprise that every year, the time around Christmas and New Year’s is one of the deadliest times of year for American roadways.

There are several factors that go into this—the increased number of people on the roads, the potential for bad/wintery weather in certain parts of the nation, and the increased number of drunk drivers who have imbibed too much at their holiday parties.

According to the National Safety Council, an average of 343 people die on American roadways from December 24-26 each year, with an average of 373 dying over the period from December 31-January 2. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates 94 percent of traffic accidents, including in these scenarios, is due to human error and preventable mistakes.

To keep yourself and others safe on the roads over the holidays, be sure to follow these tips:

  • Never drink and drive: If you will be drinking at a holiday event or gathering, make sure you have a designated driver or an alternate way to get home that doesn’t involve you getting behind the wheel.
  • Check road conditions in advance: Avoid going out on the road if the weather is prohibitive with lots of snow and ice.
  • Be well rested: Make sure you’re well rested if you’re going out on the road, especially after late-night New Year’s celebrations.
  • Drive during the daylight: While the roads might be more crowded, visibility will be better and people will be much less likely to be driving while intoxicated.
  • Keep a reasonable speed: Avoid speeding, especially when the weather is bad, as this heightens your risk of accidents and serious injuries.

For more tips for staying safe on the roads over the holidays and throughout the winter, contact an experienced attorney at Jakubowski, Robertson, Maffei, Goldsmith & Tartaglia LLP.