An Alarming Estimated 400 Road Deaths Estimated for Memorial Day Weekend
The National Safety Council announced in a press release that 400 roadway deaths are estimated during this upcoming Memorial Day Weekend for the second year. In addition, they estimate that 45,800 people may be seriously injured on roadways during the three-day holiday weekend. The analysis predicts that serious injuries can be anywhere from 40,000 to 52,000 people. Between 2011 and 2015, Memorial Day weekend averaged about 312 fatalities per weekend but each year it has increased. It is estimated that more than 35 million
Doesn’t that seem insane?
Summer tends to be the most dangerous season for motor vehicle crashes and it officially launches summer, however, it should not launch record-breaking road fatalities. Nationally, Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day, claim over 110 lives each day–the highest average per-day fatalities.
But 400 deaths this weekend in the US? Yes, that was not a typo. So, slow down, pay attention, buckle up and don’t drink and drive.
So, are we recommending you just don’t drive?
No, that would be absurd. But, the great advice phrases of “keep your eyes on the road” and “don’t drink and drive” seem to lose their effectiveness over time. Often times, drivers often only alter their driver safety practices AFTER they are either injured or know someone deeply impacted by distracted or drunk driving. Road safety organizations continue to raise awareness and remind each of us to pay attention and refrain from drinking and driving, but there are still way too many people who text and drive or drink and drive.
Historically, 36 percent of the fatalities are alcohol-related, thus imagine the number of road fatalities we could reduce every year if no one drove while being alcohol impaired.
When you think about your odds among an average of 48,000 serious injuries or 400 road deaths, it should give you pause. You should stop and think about what YOU can do to make your trip safer.
Safety Precautions You Can Take
You cannot be responsible for everyone on the roadway, but you can take safety precautions when you drive this summer:
- Drive defensively. Buckle Up- Seat belts are 45% effective in preventing fatalities among front-seat passengers.
- Designate a sober driver or make a plan for alternate transportation
- Avoid distractions. If you’re smartphone is giving you directions, put it only on audio. Don’t text and fiddle with your phone while driving!
- Get plenty of sleep prior–you will need it for the celebration, but more importantly you need to arrive at your destinations alive and unharmed
- Stay involved in discussing safety with your teen driver
- Learn about your vehicles’ safety options
- Have a plan if your vehicle breaks down or you have a fender bender- if you break down on an interstate, call 911. Turn on your flashers and consider getting a safe distance from your vehicle.
Peak Risky Driving Times Over the Holiday Weekend
Like any other weekend, the most risky times to drive are late at night and the early morning hours as that is when you are most likely to encounter impaired drivers. Driving while impaired due to alcohol is the very definition of negligence–“failure to use reasonable care, resulting in damage or injury to another”.
Those who climb behind the wheel after drinking absolutely know better. While there are usually multiple sobriety checkpoints going on during the holiday weekend during those peak hours, you have to consider your safety first. If you can plan to stay over at your destination and minimalize driving during the late night hours and early morning hours, then you should.
Obviously, Sunday afternoon and early evening will be busy traffic times as well. Many drivers by Sunday afternoon are extremely fatigued and possibly hung-over. Traffic will be heavy, thus plan accordingly. Leave ample time in your driving schedule as being too aggressive or inpatient can actually contribute to crashes.
We Represent Those Injured in Crashes
If you are involved in a crash, you probably don’t know what to do first. Obviously, get medical treatment if needed, right away. Nothing is more important than you getting the medical treatment that you need. Don’t put it off and call our attorneys immediately.
Call our attorneys toll free 1.800.685.3302 or locally, 3.14.276.1681
Unfortunately, our summer holiday weekends are usually busy with phone calls because we know that if you are in a crash, you need immediate advice. Thus, we are available seven days a week.