7 Tips for Preventing Car Accidents During the Holidays
The holiday season is one of the more dangerous times to commute on the roads. From poor weather conditions to an abundance of vehicles on the road, taking extra precautions during the holiday season is always a good idea. As gasoline prices continue to be more affordable, many people are choosing to drive rather than spending the extra money on airfare. Skipping the airport all together becomes more appealing when flight delays are a common occurrence. Whether you are driving long distances or just a short trek to grandma’s house, staying safe on the road this holiday season is important. As you finalize your travel plans for the holiday season, read our tips on preventing car accidents during the holidays.
- Keep an Eye on the Weather
Weather conditions can quickly take a turn for the worse making your holiday travel plans stressful and hectic. If you are traveling out of state where winter weather hinders driving conditions, make certain to keep an eye on the weather. Getting caught in a snow storm is never a fun way to spend the holidays. Make sure to give yourself enough time to get to your location. Rushing can lead to accidents. Other ways to help ensure you’re ready for a long holiday drive is to make sure your vehicle is also ready. Replace wiper blades, change the oil, checking the tires, and other routine maintenance can go a long way for your safety. Storing an emergency car kit is another way to help keep you and your family safe while traveling this holiday season.
- Forgo Speeding
Travelers hear this on a non-stop basis. From the radio ads to television, speeding is not only against the law it is extremely unsafe. Speeding is one of the main causes of car accidents. There is nothing more precious in life than your family. Speeding can increase your chances of getting into an accident and it is just plain risky. Don’t risk the life of your family or anyone else on the road. Always obey the speed limits.
- Never Drink and Drive
The holidays are often full of great friends, family, food and beverages. If you choose to consume alcohol and you need to travel, make sure to designate a sober driver. Drinking and driving is never a good idea. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that in 2014 alone, there were 9,967 fatalities with motor vehicle collisions involving a driver with a BAC (blood alcohol count) of .08 or higher. This number continues to rise each year. The study also shows that an average of 1 alcohol impaired driving fatality occurs every 53 minutes. Drinking and driving is risky, unsafe, and worse: deadly. Never drink and drive.
- Keep an Eye out for Drunk Drivers
Traveling during the holidays is hectic. With an abundance of drivers on the road the number of car accidents increase significantly, most notably during the holiday season. To stay safe and avoid car accidents this season keep an eye out for drunk drivers. Typical behavior of a drunk driver is swerving, crossing the center lines, speeding up and slowing down, and other irresponsible driving behavior. If you have a passenger, contacting law enforcement if you think someone may be drinking and driving can help save lives.
- Stay off your Mobile Devices
Technology continues to provide everyone with the latest access to social media, navigation and more. However, checking your email or texting while driving is very unsafe. If you use navigation while driving, ask a passenger to help navigate. Enter driving locations beforehand to alleviate the need to look up directions while driving. Distracted driving continues to be one of the more common causes of automobile accidents. In some states, it is even illegal to use a cell phone while driving. It may be tempting to take or make phone calls while driving long distances, however it could be the difference between life and death. To hinder the temptation, consider putting your phone or tablets inside the glove box or in a suitcase until you reach your destination.
- Stay Alert Stay Awake
If you are planning a long-distance drive for the holiday season, make sure to allow yourself enough time to get there safely. Don’t overextend yourself by driving straight through the night and day. Driving drowsy can hinder your safety and the safety of others on the road. Studies continue to show that driving while sleep deprived is nearly identical as driving under the influence of alcohol. Leave yourself enough time to get to your destination and take breaks for long trips.
- Relax and Stay Safe
The holiday season brings out the best and worst in drivers. For some drivers, it means staying sane while driving is a hefty task. However, keeping your stress level in check is vital to your safety and those of your passengers. If you let stress control how you navigate through traffic or on icy roads, it could have dire consequences. Aggressive driving such as tailgating and road-rage can have severe outcomes.
As you finalize your holiday travel plans, remember to stay safe and stay alert while driving. You can never be too safe on the road. If you are involved in a car accident caused by the careless driving of another motorist, protect your rights by calling the team at Greening Law P.C. at 972-934-8900.
We fight the legal battle, so you have time for healing and renewal.