Every Thanksgiving weekend, there is a rise in car accidents in Massachusetts and across the country. Indeed, the U.S. death rate spikes on Thanksgiving, with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration advising drivers to stay safe, as no holiday leads to more deadly accidents.
Thanksgiving is about being thankful and giving gratitude – not about being injured in a car accident and dealing with the aftermath of a wreck. As such, consider these top causes of Thanksgiving car accidents, and what you can do to travel more safely this holiday season–
Drinking While Driving
Many people would agree that a Thanksgiving day celebration–and certainly the feast–isn’t complete without a beverage or two. Indeed, alcohol sales surge during the holidays. And while there’s no doubt that a fine glass of wine and turkey can pair well together, drinking and driving are never a good match.
Unfortunately, however, Thanksgiving is one of the most dangerous holidays for alcohol-related crashes. If you have an alcoholic beverage this Thanksgiving, do not get behind the wheel of a car. If you notice a vehicle on the road that is being operated erratically, make a mental note of the vehicle’s information, pull over, and call it in to law enforcement.
Another reason that car accidents increase over the long Thanksgiving weekend is simply that there is more traffic congestion; more cars on the road increase the risk of an accident in statistical terms. A lot of traffic can also be very frustrating for drivers, who may demonstrate road rage or operate their vehicles aggressively, only adding to the risk of a crash. If you’re driving in traffic this Thanksgiving, take deep breaths and remember to be patient.
Driving in Unfamiliar Places and for Long Distances
A huge percentage of Americans travel by car over the Thanksgiving holiday in order to be with loved ones. While spending the holiday with family is ideal, unfortunately, this often means operating a vehicle in territory that one is not familiar with. Being unfamiliar with one’s surroundings can increase the risk of a crash.
What’s more, some road trips may be very long, last multiple hours or even require two or more days. When this is the case, drivers may become fatigued, increasing crash risk.
If roadtripping this Thanksgiving, don’t do it alone. Ask the passenger in the front seat to help you to navigate, and trade off drivers every few hours.
Night Driving/Poor Weather Driving
Finally, Thanksgiving doesn’t always offer good weather, especially in Massachusetts. Ice, snow, and fog can all make for difficult conditions for vehicle operation. When driving at night with poor lighting, in an unfamiliar place, while fatigued, or after having an alcoholic beverage, driving can be especially dangerous.
Stay Safe This Thanksgiving
We encourage you to follow the safe driving tips above, and hope that your Thanksgiving is safe and accident-free. If you are involved in a crash, don’t hesitate to contact the offices of Deborah Gold-Alexander, Attorney at Law. Deborah Gold-Alexander has over 30 years’ experience as a car accident lawyer in Massachusetts, and can help you to understand your options for maximizing your compensation after a crash. Get in touch with her today by calling directly, or sending a message using the online form found here.