For many, Memorial Day Weekend is the official beginning to summer. Spending time with family, remembering our fallen military members, and taking advantage of a three-day weekend are all reasons people will travel this weekend.
There will be an estimate 42.75 million travelers this weekend; a 4% increase from 2018. It’s an incredibly dangerous time to be on the road.
According to recent studies, travelers are four times more likely to be killed in a car accident over Memorial Day Weekend than during any other time of the year. Memorial Day is fast approaching. It’s important to know why accidents are more likely to happen, how to stay safe, and what to do if you are involved in a crash this holiday weekend.
Why Are There More Car Accidents During Memorial Day Weekend?
There are a few reasons why car accidents happen more frequently over Memorial Day weekend.
A lot of people travel over Memorial Day weekend. As a result, there are more cars on the road than normal. One study estimates that of the 42.75 million Americans traveling 34.6 million Americans will logs more than 50 miles behind the wheel this holiday weekend.
When roads are congested, accidents are more likely to happen. There’s simply less room for error when you’re sharing the road with more vehicles.
Alcohol is a common factor at many Memorial Day celebrations. Monday may be a holiday, but there’s still school and work on Tuesday. Many drivers, in a rush to get home, don’t take the time to sober up after spending hours drinking at a backyard BBQ.
Drivers under the influence contribute to a significant number of Memorial Day crashes. When a driver is drunk, they lack the skills and reflexes that are necessary to navigate safely.
Fatigue leads people to fall asleep at the wheel or make bad judgement calls, so it always recommended to obtain enough sleep before driving. Driver fatigue accidents are difficult to quantify because there is no drowsiness test comparable to blood alcohol testing for drunk drivers. Conservative estimates by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) place fatigue-caused accidents at 100,000 a year, with 1,550 resulting deaths, 71,000 injuries and $12.5 billion in costs.
How Can I Help Avoid A Car Accident?
Stay alert when you are driving and avoid text messaging and other activities that distract you from the road.
- Do not drink and drive or use other drugs that may inhibit your reaction time and ability to drive.
- Plan ahead and allow for extra time to avoid being rushed and distractions.
- Check the Washington State Department of Transportation’s best times to travel charts to help plan your trip and avoid congestion. For travel times and charts click here.
What Should I Do If I’m Involved in a Car Accident?
Even if you take steps to stay safe, there’s still a chance that you’ll be injured in a car accident. Your choices and decisions after an accident will affect any injury claims you decide to file. Here’s what you should do if you are involved in a crash this holiday weekend:
1) Call the Police
2) Exchange Information
3) Get the names and contact information for witnesses
4) Seek medical attention if necessary
5) Report the collision to the insurance but do not give any details until you have spoken with an attorney.
6) Call Althauser Rayan Abbarno at (360) 736-1301
You may have an obligation to cooperate with your own insurance, do not provide detail of the collision until you had time to speak with an attorney.
You do not have an obligation to speak with the at-fault drivers insurance and you should not speak to the insurance company until you speak with Althauser Rayan Abbarno.
Althauser Rayan Abbarno offers free glove box auto collision cards in both their Olympia and Centralia offices or by calling (360) 736-1301. The glove box cards include steps to take in the event of a car accident and accident report card to record important information about the collision.
Althauser Rayan Abbarno injury attorneys have offices in Centralia and Olympia for your convenience. For more than 70 years, our attorneys have fought for the rights and benefits of victims of car accidents throughout the State of Washington.
To meet with our experienced Althauser Rayan Abbarno attorneys in Centralia or Olympia, call (360) 736-1301 or visit CentraliaLaw.com. All injury and car accident consultations are FREE.
Personal Injury, Workers’ Compensation, and Car Accident Lawyers Near you in Olympia and Centralia offering FREE Consultations and Claim Evaluations by calling (360) 736-1301.
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