Posted by: jwtarr | November 17, 2008

The Most Dangerous Holidays for Drivers

According to National Highway Transportation Saftey Administration statistics, Thanksgiving is the most dangerous holiday for drivers

According to National Highway Transportation Saftey Administration statistics, Thanksgiving is the most dangerous holiday for drivers

With many families in upstate New York and across the country planning their holiday getaways, we often take for granted that we will arrive at our destinations safely.  Millions of people may be driving this year during the holidays.  With the holidays come dangerous behaviors by drivers.  Even if you do not get into a car intoxicated or deprived of sleep, many other people will. 

According to recent statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Thanksgiving is actually the most dangerous holiday period for drivers during the year.  Researchers say Thanksgiving Day is when drinking, heavy traffick, and long-distance car rides combine to make for treacherous traveling conditions.

MSNBC used statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to develop a list of the Top 10 most dangerous holidays to travel.  MSNBC used data from NHTSA’s report on motor vehicle deaths during three- to four-day  holiday periods between 2001-2006.   Also taken into account were AAA statistics on the number of people on the roads and the number of alcohol related crashes during the holidays.   MSNBC thus compiled its own report.

Increased amounts of drivers on the road, together with alcohol consumption and long-holiday drives combine for dangerous driving conditions

Increased amounts of drivers on the road, together with alcohol consumption and long-holiday drives combine for dangerous driving conditions

The Top 10 Most Dangerous Holidays for Drivers:

  1. Thanksgiving- (Average Vehicular Deaths- 573)
  2. Independence Day (505) 
  3. Memorial Day Weekend (493)
  4. Labor Day Weekend  (488)
  5. New Years Eve/Day (421)
  6. Halloween (448)
  7. Christmas (385)
  8. St. Patricks Day*- 50% of highway fatalities in 2006 involved alcohol
  9. Cinco De Mayo*- 43% of highway fatalities on May from 2002-2006

*No numerical data on vehicular deaths available from NHTSA for St. Patrick’s Day and Cinco de Mayo

AOL published even more detailed information from the NHTSA regarding specific calendar days of the year which have proven to be the most dangerous.  That Top 10 list was compiled after researchers looked at more than 25 years of data.

What can you do to be prepared?

There are many things you can do to help prevent yourself from being in a bad situation.

AAA suggests checking your vehicle before you go out on the roads, including your battery, brakes, tires, engine coolant etc.  A complete list from AAA has been posted on a number of websites.  The most simple advice though can often be the best.  Experts say to stay vigilant, watch for suspicious behavior and driving patterns, watch for weather conditions and always remember to wear your seat belt.

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