On holiday’s such as July 4th, Christmas and Memorial day, most people are aware that there might be a lot of traffic and in general, more accidents happen on those holidays. Labor day is no different. In 2015, over 35,000 people have died in traffic crashes according to the NHTSA. The National Safety Council estimates that the total number of traffic fatalities in September of 2016 will be around 3,641. Also, according to the average percent of fatalities over Labor Day weekend from 2009-2014, it is estimated that around 438 of those fatalities will occur during the three-day weekend.
The National Safety Council also found that the Labor Day Weekend holiday typically has 5.7% higher than average fatality rate. These are all important factors to consider when driving during the holiday weekend. Combined with the Tropical Storm sweeping across Florida, accidents are definitely going to occur at a higher than usual rate.
What can you do?
There are ways to take extra precautions when driving on busy weekends.
First, make sure your car is taken care of. Does your car need oil? Is your tire pressure good? How about your tire treads? Are all your fluid levels adequate? Also make sure to have an emergency kit in your care that includes a first aid kit, water and some protein bars in case you were to get stranded on a long drive.
While you are driving, if it starts to rain heavily and you cannot see, do not put your hazards on. Instead, pull over to the next safe location and wait until the storm passes or slows down. Same goes for if you start feeling drowsy. Pull over to the next safe location and take a break until you’ve regained some energy.
Finally, try to leave at an off-peak time. If you are leaving on Friday, leave after morning rush hour or before afternoon rush hour. If you are leaving Saturday, make sure to leave early. When returning on Labor Day, try to leave before 4 PM or after 10 PM to avid the traffic.
Please travel safely this holiday weekend and have a great Labor Day!