How to Stay Alive to Enjoy the Holidays

Fatal Wreck Caused by Drunk Driver

Fatal Wreck Caused by Drunk Driver

The period between Thanksgiving and New Years holidays is notorious for fatal traffic accidents. Short tempers, rushes to get to a destination and holiday partying add to lousy weather conditions to create the perfect storm. In light of the holiday season, we’re offering some tips on how to stay alive to greet 2010. While some tips seem ordinary, others may surprise you:

  1. Don’t drink and drive: Get a taxi or enlist the help of a designated driver for holiday parties and other events where you know you will imbibe in alcoholic drinks. The average BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) among fatally injured drinking drivers is only .16.
  2. Wear a seatbelt: It’s the law in most states, and seatbelts truly do save lives.
  3. If you’re a doctor, take extra care with driving: Studies show that forĀ  every 1,000 physicians with a driver’s license, each year 109 are involved in a crash and 44 get speeding tickets. Experts say the big reason is that doctor/drivers are chronically tired and busy thinking about their work.
  4. Do not talk or text on your mobile while driving: If I catch you doing this, I will report you (especially if you’re my daughter). Researchers have found that drivers who text are not only 50 percent more likely than cell phone users to cause traffic accidents, but to take 23 percent longer than non-texters to react before an accident occurs.
  5. Stay alert: You may be a great driver, but don’t trust anyone else. Fatal accidents often are caused by driver inattention, failure to merge or yield, aggressive driving and failure to exercise care in passing. With that said…
  6. Do not speed: Road conditions and crowded highways provide scenarios for frustration. Don’t add to that equation with speeding, as your reaction time is mitigated by your speed. Additionally, keeping to the speed limit can eliminate speeding tickets as well as save gas.
  7. Get rest: Don’t drive while tired. Estimates are that 10-20 percent of fatal accidents and about 5 to 10 percent of all car accidents may be related to tired drivers. If you cannot pull over, read these tips on how to stay alert.
  8. Get the car checked before a trip: SmartMotorist states that equipment failure is a major contributor to accidents. They have a list of things to check before you hit the road.
  9. Stop rubbernecking: New studies have shown that rubbernecking is a leading cause of accidents and causes many traffic delays.
  10. Watch the weather: The weather can change from state to state and even from one county to another. Check weather and road conditions before you leave on your trip. You can save time — and, possibly, your life — if you know in advance what you may encounter along the way. Each state usually has a weather/road conditions site carried by a state Department of Transportation organization. Use their information to stay updated.

Finally, if you want to impress your kid, your friends or your relatives (or yourself) before you hit the road this holiday season, visit Car Accidents. This site shows images of cars involved in various fatal wrecks from around the world. While some photos make it seem obvious that no one survived, you might be surprised at some other accident photos. While the car is barely scratched, the driver or passengers did not survive (no seat belt, etc.).

Have a safe holiday trip!

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