Holiday safety

NSC estimates 400+ people will die in traffic crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday

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The National Safety Council estimates that as many as 437 people may be killed and 50,300 seriously injured in motor vehicle-related crashes during the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.

This estimate is 12 percent higher than the average number of fatalities – 391 – that have occurred during the previous six Thanksgiving holiday periods, NSC states in a press release.

“During the holidays, many drivers are more concerned about getting to their destinations quickly than safely,” Deborah A.P. Hersman, president and CEO of NSC, said in the release. “But overlooking common roadway risks can have deadly consequences. Make sure you pay attention and drive defensively so everyone can spend time with friends and family rather than at a hospital.”

NSC offers the following tips to help drivers stay safe during Thanksgiving travel:

  • Designate an alcohol and drug-free driver or arrange alternate transportation.
  • Get plenty of sleep and take regular breaks from driving to avoid fatigue.
  • Never use a cell phone – even hands-free – while behind the wheel.
  • Don’t allow teens to drive with their friends or younger siblings. A single young passenger can increase a teen driver’s fatal crash risk by 44 percent.
  • Learn about your vehicle’s safety systems and how to use them.