This year, 55.4 million people are expected to hit the road for the Thanksgiving holiday. That’s up from last year, when an estimated 49.3 million travelers hit the road to be with family and friends. According to the U.S. Bureau of Transportation, long-distance road trips increase by more than 55% over the six-day Thanksgiving travel period. With many people traveling over the river and through the woods to surround themselves with delicious food, great company and a little holiday cheer, the risk of being involved in an automobile accident increases too.
Thankfully, there are some simple precautions one can take to ensure arrival to – and from – Thanksgiving festivities safe and sound.
The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is most often associated with alcohol consumption and socializing. There is a good reason why: people traveling back to their hometowns for the main attraction use the day (and night) before as an opportunity to catch up with old friends. For many, that means dinner and a few drinks. Remember when consuming any alcohol, it is important to plan ahead:
- Designate a sober driver before the first drink. Even a single drink impairs reaction time and cognitive function, both important skills when getting behind the wheel.
- Use Uber, Lyft, or another form of public transportation to get home safely. Both Uber and Lyft operate locally in York and Adams Counties.
- If a driver is behaving dangerously or erratically, contact local law enforcement.
- Always, always wear a seat belt.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that from 2012 to 2016, over 800 people died in an alcohol-impaired crash during the Thanksgiving holiday. An increase in alcohol consumption on Thanksgiving Day (and more drivers on the road) means increased risk while driving.
If watching football on Thanksgiving is a holiday tradition, do it from the safety of home, especially if alcohol is involved. For many people, traveling between the homes of family and friends over the course of the day is common. Take care to avoid overindulging and getting behind the wheel.
The rush to take advantage of those time-sensitive deals can put shoppers and drivers in potentially harmful situations. Auto insurers report the number of claims spike on Black Friday and run above normal throughout the holiday shopping season. Help keep your loved ones safe by getting adequate sleep, putting down distractions and exercising caution around other drivers.
While we hope your family stays safe this holiday season, if you or a loved one are injured in an accident, reach out to the auto accident lawyers at Dale E. Anstine. Our team will fight for the compensation you deserve to cover expensive medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering. Consultations are always FREE, we are available 24/7, and there is no fee unless we win for you.