You Might Want to Avoid Driving on These Deadly Days
As the holiday season approaches, we should all be looking forward to time with family and friends. Road trips for Thanksgiving dinner with Grandma, trips to festive shopping malls to find that perfect gift, and ringing in the New Year are all occasions to look forward to this fall and winter. Unfortunately this good times also bring an increase in fatalities on our local and interstate roadways. Learning these facts may force you to give up some of your favorite traditions.
Family, Food, and Fun Are Common Factors
Any occasion that brings people together to drink and have a good time can lead to an increase in impaired drivers on the road. It may seem obvious that some of these days would lead to more accidents, but others may be surprising. According to data from the insurance industry, the most dangerous days on the road are the following:
- Memorial Day weekend. As the official start to summer, this weekend is a popular one for cookouts that involve alcohol and road trips to vacation destinations. The combination of more cars on the road and more drunk drivers can be deadly. On average, there are 13 percent more traffic deaths on this weekend than any other.
- The start of Daylight Savings Time. We all know that driving while fatigued can lead to crashes, but many people are not aware of the effect that hour of lost sleep has on drivers every spring. Studies show an increase of 17 percent in traffic deaths on the Monday after we spring ahead, compared to other Mondays.
- Black Friday. With an estimated 70 million shoppers rushing around for bargains the day after Thanksgiving, accidents are bound to happen. Getting up at the crack of dawn to be the first in line for a deal results in overtired, often angry and disappointed drivers, on the roads by noon, doubling incidents of parking lot fender-benders
- NFL game day. Whether you are a Cowboys fan or not, you have likely seen the craziness that surrounds an NFL game. After a game, fans are either jubilant or angry—either way, they often drive aggressively. Add alcohol as another factor, and accident claims around stadiums on game day can jump as much as 80 percent.
- Friday the 13th. Believe it or not, a study done in the U.K. found that accident claims increased by 13 percent on Friday the 13th, regardless of in which season the unlucky date fell. It is also a good day to leave your black cat at home.
- New Year’s Day. This date is deadlier than New Year’s Eve—possibly because revelers aren’t heading home until after midnight, which makes it New Year’s Day. Over 40 percent of all traffic deaths on the first of the year are alcohol-related.
- July 4th. From 2000 to 2013, Independence Day ranked as the deadliest day of the year. As a national holiday, people are off work and school, the weather is often nice, and everyone is in the mood to celebrate. As a result, drunk and fatigued driving increase, as do fatal crashes.
- Thanksgiving. More a factor of the sheer number of cars on the road than the number of impaired drivers, accident rates are always high on turkey day. Getting up early to cook or travel, a little wine with a mid-day meal, and lots of other cars on the road are a recipe for crashes.
- Christmas. Sadly, crashes are common in the six days surrounding Christmas Day, primarily due to the stress of the holiday season. Increased travel and pressure from families contribute to aggressive driving behaviors and an increase in crashes.
- St. Patrick’s Day. Not surprising on a day when drinking begins at breakfast, drunk driving is the main factor in the high rates of driving deaths on March 17. If you want luck in the coming year, your best bet may be to toast the Irish from home.
When Bad Things Happen to Good People
Almost all of these potentially deadly days are meant to be the best days of the year. A car packed with family heading to see siblings and cousins for Christmas or a trip to the mall to buy your spouse that special gift should not end in tragedy. If you are the victim of a negligent or drunk driver on one of these dangerous days, contact the experienced car accident attorneys at Steve Lee. We will make sure the responsible party is held accountable and that you will be able to celebrate the next special occasion. Call us now at 800-232-3711.