With each holiday season we see an uptick of highway car accidents and truck accidents throughout Massachusetts and Rhode Island, due to factors like distracted driving and driving under the influence of alcohol and cannibas/THC on busy highways like I-95, I-195 and Route-24. Whether you’re loading up the family for a holiday road trip or sticking around to attend a Christmas Eve, Christmas or New Year’s 2019 party or two with friends, it’s important to drive defensively and drive sober to help assure that you and those you share the road with get to their destinations safe and sound. Here are some tips to help to avoid car accidents and this 2018 holiday season.
Tips For Heading Out On A Holiday Road Trip
You will likely encounter holiday traffic full of distracted drivers and people driving under the influence of alcohol, marijuana and cannibas/THC edibles on major highways, as well as smaller routes like Route 18 through New Bedford and Bridgewater or Route-6 through Fall River, Somerset and East Providence. A distracted driving car accident will not only ruin the holidays for you and your family, but can leave the victim(s) suffering from painful whiplash type injury, life-changing catastrophic personal injury or even accidental death.
- Plan Your Route – Most people depend on GPS devices these days, but it’s still important to take a look at your route ahead of time and get an idea of which busier traffic areas you might be traveling through, where smart places for refueling may be and where you can get a hotel/motel for the night, if need be. Give yourself extra time if possible, to avoid the need to rush or speed.
- Be sure that your vehicle is in good working order – Before traveling to your holiday destination, make sure to get a tune up; check tire tread and pressure, oil and fluid levels, working lights and windshield wipers, etc.
- As always, buckle up for safety – In the majority of accidents, seat belts save lives. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), seat belts reduce serious crash-related injuries and deaths by about 50%. Adults who live in rural areas are 10% less likely to wear seat belts (78% usage) than adults who live in urban and suburban areas (87% usage). Also, secure your infants and children in properly fitted car seats and booster seats.
- Put the distractions away – Never text while driving. Search for whichever stop or other destinations BEFORE you begin driving. Program your GPS, tune your radio station to B101 for your favorite Christmas music, etc. prior to hitting the road. One or two seconds of driving distracted can turn the holidays tragic.
- Observe speed limits – Again, allow plenty of time to get to your destination. You will have to share the road with thousands of other drivers, road construction, and unpredictable New England weather.
- Occupy children with games and snacks – Road trips can be tough for younger kids and parenting from the driver’s seat can be difficult and distracting. Make sure to charge any battery-operated games or devices and pack yummy snacks to distract them from distracting you.
- Drive cautiously on rural roads – Some of the nicest destinations happen to be out in the “sticks”. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), more accidents occur on rural roads than other venues. Stay alert, watch out for deer and other animals, drive slowly on unfamiliar curvy roads.
- NEVER drive under the influence – Both drinking alcohol and consuming cannabis/THC products will slow reaction time and impair judgment and coordination, all skills needed to drive a car safely.
Tips For Attending Christmas Parties And Other Holiday Festivities
- Designate a safe ride home – If you or your driver are having a few drinks or consuming recreational marijuana, make sure to avoid driving drunk or stoned at all costs. Choose a sober designated driver for the evening.
- Use Taxis & Ride-sharing – If you find yourself in a situation in which you or your driver have become unable to drive sober, there are always other options. Call a taxi or request a ride from Uber or Lyft. It’s worth a few dollars to avoid the potential for a life-changing tragic car accident.
- Stay alert on your ride home – People tend to leave their holiday parties later at night. Pull over and Take a break when feeling drowsy. Drive defensively to avoid car accidents with drunk drivers on the road
Happy Holidays From D+Z: Experienced Car Accident Attorneys In Massachusetts & Rhode Island
If you or a loved one have been the victim of any type of a car accident this holiday season, please contact us to speak with an experienced attorney. Dussault & Zatir P.C. has lawyers on call at +1-800-542-4LAW to answer your personal injury questions. With offices in New Bedford, Fall River and Taunton, Massachusetts, as well as an office in Providence, Rhode Island, if you’ve been injured, our lawyers are here to fight for you.
*The above is not to be considered as legal advice. Every case is different and the laws which apply may differ from state to state.
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