At this very moment, workers across New Jersey are counting down the hours until the end of the workday and the start of the Memorial Day weekend. Indeed, while many are planning to stay close to home and enjoy time with family and friends, many others have their vehicles packed for a long weekend.
AAA is projecting that roughly 39.3 million people will be traveling at least 50-miles from Thursday, May 25 and Monday, May 29, creating the highest volume of travelers in 12 years. Perhaps not surprisingly, it's also projecting that 88.1 percent of these travelers will be driving to their destination.
While this development is perhaps not unexpected given the nation's improving economic conditions and lower gas prices, it's important for those making the drive to proceed with caution, as with more traffic comes more danger.
In case you have a hard time believing it, consider that a recent study by one personal finance website found that Memorial Day weekend is the deadliest holiday for drivers, ahead of events like Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve, and averaging 312 fatalities from 2011 to 2015.
Furthermore, the National Safety Council is already projecting that as many as 47,000 people will be seriously injured and another 409 will lose their lives in car accidents over Memorial Day weekend 2017, a 12 percent increase in the average fatality rate.
While all of this can prove to be somewhat disturbing, the NSC has offered a few safety tips that can help keep drivers safe over the long weekend:
- Always wear your seatbelt
- Always use the appropriate child safety seat
- Always use a designated driver
- Always take breaks if you are fatigued
- Always eliminate distractions
- Always familiarize yourself with your vehicle's safety features
- Always limit your teen's driving over the holiday
Here's hoping for a safe Memorial Day holiday …
Always remember to consider speaking with a skilled legal professional if the reckless actions of another motorist have left you with serious injuries or an immeasurable loss.