Thanksgiving weekend travel can be as bad as people say it is. Statistics show that this weekend is filled with accidents, injuries, and, sadly, fatalities. It’s important to be extra safe during your weekend travel, especially if you’re driving a long distance. Primary Care Auto Repair wants to give you some data collected by federal authorities over the previous holiday weekends to demonstrate why you should implement super-safe driving practices all weekend long.
Thanksgiving weekend kicks off on Wednesday at 6 p.m., and it doesn’t slow down until the following Sunday. Wednesday is Thanksgiving Eve, Thursday is Thanksgiving, Friday is Black Friday, and Saturday and Sunday are recovery/travel home days. Drivers tend to be extra-stressed from Wednesday on.
Historically, Wednesday and Sunday are the days when there are the most cars on the road, but Black Friday shoppers clog the highways, byways, and city streets all day Friday, as well. Last year, it is estimated that 55 million people traveled by car over Thanksgiving weekend. That’s a lot of cars!
Thanksgiving Accident Statistics
The data that we were able to collect is from three separate Thanksgiving weekends: 2017, 2018, and 2019. Even though this data comes from three separate years, the picture it paints is eye-opening. Last year – 2019 – the National Safety Council projected 417 people would die in automobile accidents over Thanksgiving weekend; this was based in part on the 385 Thanksgiving weekend fatalities in 2018.
It was also estimated that about 50,000 accidents would occur over Thanksgiving 2019 and nearly as many people would be injured in those accidents. Over Thanksgiving weekend in 2017, 35 percent of the vehicular fatalities were caused by drunk drivers, a shocking fact when you take into account how strict authorities are over drunk driving. In Rhode Island, you’re driving illegally if your BAC is .08 or more.
Your Thanksgiving Safety Plan
With these statistics in mind, you can make a safety plan now that will keep you safe over the holiday weekend. You can’t control other drunk drivers, but you can make certain that you don’t drink and drive. You can also anticipate problems before they happen and take action to avoid them. One example would be to move away from a vehicle that is swerving between lanes or following too closely.
Give yourself plenty of time to get where you’re going, as well, and make sure you don’t end up with car trouble by bringing your vehicle into Primary Care Auto Repair in Warwick, RI, ahead of time.