How to Avoid a Car Accident on Thanksgiving

Traveling for Thanksgiving accidents

“You can’t drive home now,” Aunt Agnes says. “You’ve eaten a turkey drumstick, two slabs of white meat, and a wing.” She uses a forefinger to adjust her bifocals. “Turkey is loaded with tryptophan,” she says. “That’s an enzyme, you know, and it’s like a sleeping pill.” She then looks over her bifocals at you and glares. “You’ll fall asleep and crash.”

She is right about the enzyme, but turkey isn’t the mother lode of tryptophan (chicken has more), and the real Thanksgiving prescription for grogginess is an after-turkey-dinner jolt of carbohydrates (that slice of mincemeat pie, the wee wedge of pumpkin pie – to be polite – and those four cookies). The carbs team up with the tryptophan to help your body make serotonin. That is what has you sinking into the couch and snoring as the football play-by-play chatter from the TV and your family drone on in the background.

Aunt Agnes is right, though: Planning to avoid a Georgia car accident on Thanksgiving is a great idea, one that more people should have. Fact is, Thanksgiving is among the riskiest holiday weeks of the year on U.S. roads, even topping the list some years.

Traveling in or out of GA for Thanksgiving? Beware of These GA Car Crash Projections

The National Safety Council estimates highway fatalities for upcoming holidays. For 2012, it projected there would be 451 traffic deaths during the Thanksgiving holiday, which officially begins the Wednesday before and ends the Sunday after Thanksgiving. There were 405. It’s a bleak sort of good news that the estimate was off by 46, but it was still within the projected range of 384 to 528.

The projection for Thanksgiving 2016 was not available at the time of this writing, but the AAA auto club said 48.7 million Americans would drive 50 miles or more from home for the family feast, the highest estimate since 2007 – thanks largely to lower gasoline prices. It’s safe to say that more travelers on the road means more risk of Georgia car crashes.

Common Causes of Thanksgiving Car Crashes in GA

The University of Alabama Center for Advanced Public Safety released a study in 2012 that found a higher risk of fatal traffic crashes during Thanksgiving. As factors in Thanksgiving crashes, it cites:

Although these factors are leading causes of car crashes throughout the year in Georgia, the risk is heightened over the holidays as more people hit the road to attend dinners and parties.  

Tips for Avoiding Thanksgiving Car Accidents in Georgia

Before you and yours head over the river and through the woods to wherever your Thanksgiving feast is, the American Red Cross recommends you download its free mobile apps for expert advice on what to do in case of a variety of emergencies.

The Red Cross, along with AAA auto club, shares these tips for staying safe while driving:

  • Monitor weather forecasts.
  • Ensure your vehicle is properly maintained, from tire pressure to battery life. Also check fluid levels and brakes.
  • Clean headlights, taillights, signal lights, and windows to enhance visibility, especially for driving at night.
  • Map your route and be ready for heavy traffic. Try to schedule driving for hours when traffic is not at peak levels.
  • Have roadside assistance contact information handy, along with auto registration and insurance information.
  • Take a cellphone and charger: smart phone
  • Buckle up.
  • Be well-rested and alert.
  • Follow the rules of the road.
  • Use caution in work zones.
  • Give full attention to the road; avoid distractions such as cellphones.
  • Don’t speed; it can cause injuries.
  • Make frequent stops. Rotate drivers during long trips if possible. Don’t push yourself – stop and rest.
  • Turn on headlights at dusk or if it is raining hard enough to require windshield wipers.
  • Don’t overdrive your headlights.
  • If you have car trouble, pull off the road as far as possible.

Don’t let you and your family become part of the Thanksgiving crash statistics. Although you can’t control how other drivers behave, you can always take steps to make your journey as safe as possible.   

If the Worst Does Happen, We’re Here to Help

To paraphrase the poet Robert Burns, the best laid plans often go haywire en route to cranberry sauce and drumsticks. Sometimes they go horribly awry because of someone else’s negligence.

If the worst happens and you or a loved one is seriously injured in a car accident on Thanksgiving or any other day of the year, you should speak with an experienced Atlanta car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Since 1993, the Georgia law firm of Millar & Mixon, LLC has been waging winning legal battles for people who were seriously injured in automobile accidents.

Contact Millar & Mixon today to learn how our skilled auto accident attorneys can help you get your life back on track. We offer free initial consultations, and we do not charge attorney fees unless and until we secure compensation for you.

Not ready to chat? Use these free resources to help you get the information you need:

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Georgia Car Accident Checklist 

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For more information, the team at the Millar and Mixon Law Firm, LLC are here to help. With years of experience helping victims of car accidents get the compensation they deserve, the team of attorneys at Millar and Mixon can help you too. Call today!