NEW YORK. Thanksgiving is on its way. This means more drivers might be heading into the city to visit family and it also means that some drivers might be heading out for upstate celebrations. Regardless of which direction you are going, more people will be on the road over the holiday weekend. According to Time magazine, the worst times to travel in and out of New York over the Thanksgiving weekend will be Tuesday from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
While traffic can increase the risk of accidents, what are the real leading causes of crashes? Slate recently reported on a major study published by the University of Michigan that found the leading contributing factors leading to accidents. By understanding the causes of accidents, we can better understand how to prevent them. Here are five tips to avoid New York City crashes this holiday season:
- Get rest and don’t drive while tired. It’s tempting to leave work at 5 and then drive all night to make it to the grandparent’s house for Thanksgiving dinner, but driving all night and driving while you are tired can be incredibly dangerous. In fact, studies indicate that 21 percent of fatal crashes are the result of drivers falling asleep at the wheel. Why? Like drinking and driving where we are bad at knowing how drunk we are, when we are tired, we are very bad at judging how tired we are.
- Take turns slowly and watch for weather hazards. Driving too fast through turns is one of the leading causes of why people lose control of their vehicles, which is, in turn, another common cause of car accidents. Weather hazards like puddles and ice can also result in drivers losing control of their vehicles.
- Check blind spots. Use your mirrors when changing lanes. Don’t do blind turns.
- Don’t tailgate. It goes without saying, but tailgating won’t help you get to your destination faster in traffic and it makes it more likely that you’ll end up even more delayed because of a crash. Give the drivers ahead of you enough space.
- Don’t drive while distracted. Cell phone use is believed to be the underlying reason why we are seeing more traffic accidents. Texting and driving, making phone calls, and checking your GPS are all distracted driving. Save the text for later, or pull over if it is urgent. Use a hands-free device. Plan your route before you leave home or have a friend or family member navigate.
Antin, Ehrlich, & Epstein , L.L.P wish all drivers a safe holiday. Our personal injury lawyers in New York have seen firsthand how many accidents are caused by fatigue, speeding, failure to drive slowly for conditions, or because a driver failed to check a blind spot or chose to tailgate. Our attorneys have also seen situations where distracted driving has changed lives. This holiday season, plan ahead, stay safe, and arrive alive. If you or a loved one has a question about a recent car accident, contact our law firm or visit our website at http://22.214.171.124/~aeelaw/ to learn more about your rights.