Holiday driving is one of the most dangerous times of the year for its increase in accidents and fatalities, but many of these accidents are easily preventable. Distracted driving, impaired driving and stressed driving are all reasons why accidents occur, and these behaviors seem to skyrocket during the holidays. There is so much to do and such little time, leaving a lot of stress and not a lot of patience. We rush that much more and can become careless with our driving.
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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that someone dies from drunk driving every 48 minutes. In 2017, more than 300,00 injuries were attributed to drunk driving. The U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) reported that drunk drivers are to blame for 40% of all traffic-related deaths. The astounding numbers put a spotlight on the severe risk of holiday driving whether you imbibe or not.
The season brings plenty of celebration and merriment, but it also means more impaired drivers on the road.
Accidents can happen any time for any reason, but there are some dangers specific to the holiday season that threaten our safety during the happiest time of the year.
- Drunk driving is responsible for its fair share of holiday fatalities each year. Office parties, holiday celebrations and end-of-the-year events all supply plenty of opportunity for indulgence. Sometimes even the most careful driver can throw caution to the wind and get behind the wheel while impaired. Driving under the influence continues to be a problem during the holidays and carries stiff penalties, including loss of your driver’s license.
- Inclement weather gets the best of us, no matter where you live. Acts of nature like snow, black ice, high winds and hail can all make the holidays a terrifying time to be on the road. Not all drivers are adept at driving in such hazardous conditions, and even veteran drivers fall victim to the elements. Holiday accidents can cause serious damage to your vehicle and your person while significantly impacting your insurance premiums moving forward.
- Fatigued and stressed driving is especially prevalent during the holidays. Many people trek across the country to visit family and friends. With varying work and school schedules, drivers feel rushed, stressed and tired. Some drivers even fall asleep behind the wheel, significantly endangering both themselves and others. New and young drivers pose a risk, as well, because they do not have the experience and the instincts yet to react to danger quickly.
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