Most highway safety studies show that fatal crashes occur most often during summer holidays, such as Memorial Day and Fourth of July. However, the days between Halloween and the New Year can be just as dangerous for travelers. While you can certainly do your part to keep yourself safe on the road, there is no guarantee that other drivers will be as cautious.
The holidays can be stressful and distracting without adding other hazards. Even crossing a parking lot may place you at risk. Whether your travel plans will take you outside the state of New York or just across town, your awareness of potential dangers can go a long way to preventing a holiday tragedy.
Avoid these common holiday hazards
Statistics show that the greatest dangers for travelers occur on the days before and after the actual holiday when people are driving to and from their celebrations. It is during those times that you may encounter other drivers who present the following risks:
- Impairment: Between now and the end of the year, the rate of fatal accidents involving alcohol may double or even triple as partiers make the unwise choice to drive home after drinking.
- Distraction: During the holiday season, drivers tend to increase their cell phone use, whether to use their GPS, confirm meet-ups with friends or shop online behind the wheel.
- Inexperience: Drivers from out-of-town may create a hazard when they attempt to negotiate unfamiliar roads. Sudden stopping, turning without signaling or switching multiple lanes to catch an exit can place you in danger.
- Drowsiness: The holidays can take it out of you, and trying to drive after an extended period of late nights, too much food and alcohol, and the excitement of the season is a recipe for tragedy.
You can’t overlook the fact that the weather can turn quickly. Combining any of the above factors with snow, ice, fog or other weather hazards means an even greater possibility of an accident resulting in injuries.
Protecting yourself and your family
You can certainly take precautions such as avoiding the above actions, slowing down and leaving yourself plenty of room as you drive. Doing so may reduce your chances of serious injury if you should encounter a negligent driver. Unfortunately, there is no way to predict the outcome of a holiday accident. If you suffer injuries in an accident resulting from the negligence or recklessness of another driver, you would do well to seek advice about the best way to proceed in seeking the compensation you deserve.