Preparing for South Carolina Roads this Thanksgiving
Each year, tens of thousands of individuals are hurt or killed in automobile accidents with the majority of them preventable. Over major holidays, these numbers are exceptionally high. In fact, Thanksgiving is the most traveled holiday, and accidents and fatalities are at their highest between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, particularly alcohol-related crashes.
Many traffic and safety experts expect a record-breaking year for Thanksgiving travel this year. In fact, AAA released a report issuing warnings regarding the busiest travel days in South Carolina and predicted that more than two million Carolinians—including as many as 660,000 from South Carolina alone— will be traveling at least 50 miles over the Thanksgiving holiday. Further, 90% of them will be driving. As a result, the roads will be crowded—especially the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the Sunday after the holiday.
Tips to stay safe
With increased traffic comes a higher potential for accidents. Drivers can be distracted, fatigued, impatient, stressed, and drunk, and all of these factors can raise the risk for tragedies.
If you plan to travel this Thanksgiving, please be extremely cautious. One of the most important tips is ensuring that your car is in good condition, particularly the tires and windshield wipers given the potential for bad winter weather.
Other crucial tips include:
- Taking breaks while on the road
- Not driving fatigued or distracted
- Wearing your seat belts
- Getting adequate sleep
- Having roadside assistance contact information on hand in case of an accident
- Driving within the posted speed limit
- Leaving early
- Carrying a cell phone and charger at all times in case of emergency
- Abstaining from any alcohol or drugs
Know your roads
Experts also recommend mapping out your route and checking road conditions before you leave so you know what to expect if there may be delays. According to South Carolina Alliance to Fix our Roads (SCFOR), recent legislation passed by the South Carolina General Assembly has enabled work to begin to provide safer and more efficient roads, so an increased possibility of traffic delays over the holidays exists.
Finally, leave early to give yourself plenty of time to safely reach your destination.
Other potential hazards
Another potential hazard around Thanksgiving involves a disturbing increase in illnesses and not just the flu. As far back as 1978, the American Heart Journal reported that whereas traffic accidents are the number one cause of winter fatalities, coronary events—primarily heart attacks—are a close second. This study showed that the US’s mortality rate from heart attack increased by 5% between Thanksgiving and New Year’s.
Heart attacks are more common among those who are older and obese; however, you can cause additional strain on your heart by eating a huge meal or taking your football team’s loss too hard. When you combine an elevated risk for heart attack with driving, the potential dangers increase.
What you can do
If you plan on traveling by car this Thanksgiving holiday, keep in mind the aforementioned tips. Remember, nothing is more important than paying attention to the roads while you are behind the wheel. Stay safe and Happy Thanksgiving!
If you or someone you love has been injured in a vehicle accident, please contact Venus Poe today at 864.963.0310 or fill out an online case evaluation form. We have offices in Greenville and Fountain Inn, South Carolina to better serve you. Knowing your rights is imperative to ensure you are fully compensated for your injuries and other losses. Also, there is no obligation or charge for our initial consultation to see if we can assist you with your case.
The information you obtain in this article is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should not read this article to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken to you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice in the jurisdiction in which you may have a case.