The holidays can be a wonderful time to catch up with family and friends - but it's also considered among one of the most dangerous times of the year to travel by car as well.
With so numerous motorists on the road, there are many dangers that are associated with holiday travel. Factor in higher alcohol consumption and it gets even more dangerous.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Thanksgiving is the most deadly holiday for travelers. It may be surprising to some that it is not New Year's Eve or Christmas.
While not the deadliest, Christmas and New Year's are two holidays that see a massive increase in the number of automobile accidents, especially since alcohol consumption is often a huge part of these celebrations. This can make for dangerous road conditions and even more accidents than on any other single day. Nearly half of all fatalities on New Year's Eve involve alcohol. According to a Forbes report, Christmas day is the fifth most dangerous holiday with an average of 414 deaths per year since 1982.
Factor in the rising cost of airline travel, and many more people are taking to the roads during the holidays that ever have before. Another major factor is when a holiday falls on a weekend. Since 30 to 60 percent more people die in accidents on the weekends, those numbers increase when a holiday also falls on a weekend.
As with any car accident, the first step is to call 911, notify the local police and report the collision and get immediate medical assistance for even the most minor of suspected injuries.
If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident around the holiday, there are remedies available to you. Depending on the type and level of insurance coverage the at-fault driver has, vehicle damage as well as any medical bills may be covered. To learn more about your rights and options for compensation, speak to a personal injury attorney experienced in motor vehicle accident matters.
Source: Forbes, "Dangerous Driving Holidays," Jacqueline Detwiler, 11/26/11.
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