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Triple-I Blog | The dangers of driving during the holidays



By Max Dorfman, research author, Triple-I

As vacations continue to increase, it's important to remember that this time of year is particularly risky to drive. Therefore, December has been officially designated as a preventive month for drugs and drunk driving.

During the Christmas weekend, alcohol-related deaths in 201

8 accounted for 37 percent of the total traffic deaths, compared with 29 percent in total for all times of the year. In total, there are more than 750 deaths in December due to drunk driving, according to the US Department of Transportation.

According to the National Safety Council, the average number of road deaths during New Year's Day during the last five public holidays is almost 68% higher than the average number of road deaths during public holidays, with 175 deaths compared to the usual 104 deaths.

Drunk driving is not the only reason why people end up in dangerous accidents during the holidays. Extreme weather can also contribute to risks during the windy winter season, including snow, black ice, strong winds and hail. Tired and stressed driving is also a problem during the holidays, with individuals potentially traveling longer than they usually do. And by 2020, anxiety related to the coronavirus pandemic could exacerbate these stress-related problems.

With this in mind, it is important to remember some tips to be safe when driving during the holidays, including:

  • Drive defensively by taking precautions while driving, and pay attention to the cars around you. Even if you do not drink or drive recklessly, others may do so.
  • Do not drive if you drink, make sure you have safe, sober transport, no matter how far you travel.
  • Plan for severe weather by checking the weather forecast and changing your plans if necessary.

Remember: holidays can be a hectic and stressful time for people, but there is no need to let your guard go down while driving.

For safer driving tips, check out this Triple-I video.


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