Thanksgiving weekend in New Jersey and the rest of the United States is traditionally the heaviest travel period of the year. Not only do airports get crowded, but the roadways can get pretty busy too as people hit the road to visit family and friends. There are several precautions we can take as drivers to avoid car accidents and make sure that our families enjoy a safe and happy Thanksgiving. Here are a few tips to help you make this a safe and injury-free holiday for yourself and your family.
Safe Driving Tips
Before you prepare to head out this weekend, map your route, fill your tank, check your tire pressure, brakes, lights and windshield wipers to make sure they are all in good working condition. Make sure that everyone in the vehicle is buckled up. Research has shown that when lap and shoulder belts are used properly, the risk of fatal injury to front seat passengers is reduced by 45 percent and the risk of critical injuries comes down by 50 percent.
Do not drive drowsy or distracted. Drive within the posted speed limit. Leave adequate distance between you and vehicle in front so you have enough time and space to stop if necessary. If you have been drinking, do not drive. If you observe a drunk driver on the road, pull over and report it to the authorities. There were five fatalities in New Jersey involving DUI collisions during the 2010 Thanksgiving holiday period. That call you make to report a drunk driver may be a lifesaver.
Be Prepared and Stay Safe
Do not drive aggressively and stay away from any driver who displays such behavior. Also, be aware of troopers and emergency personnel who are assisting those in need. Slow down when you approach emergency vehicles with flashing lights. Follow New Jersey’s “Move Over law by moving over to create an empty lane next to the emergency vehicle. But please do so only if it is safe.
It is also important that you do not fall victim to criminal activity, which is rampant during the holiday season. Always be aware of your surroundings. Avoid dark parking lots or isolated areas. If your car’s key fob has an alarm function, have it ready in your hand as you walk toward your vehicle. You can use it to attract attention to a potentially dangerous situation.
The New Jersey personal injury lawyers of Console & Hollawell wish you and yours a happy and safe Thanksgiving holiday. Please drive safely.