Why Car Accidents Increase During the Holiday Season

Why Car Accidents Increase During the Holiday Season

According to the National Safety Council, the U.S. tends to see a spike in fatal car accidents over the holidays. In one recent year, an estimated 518 motor vehicle accident deaths occurred nationwide over the Thanksgiving holiday, defined as stretching from 6 pm the Wednesday before Thanksgiving to 11:59 pm the Sunday following Thanksgiving. 

In another recent year, the NSC estimated that there were 371 auto accident fatalities over the Christmas holiday, defined as the period from 6 pm on December 24th to 11:59 pm on December 25th, although the holiday can stretch from the 23rd to the 26th or the 24th to the 27th depending on which day of the week Christmas Day falls. 

Finally, the NSC estimated that in one recent year, 427 motor vehicle accident fatalities occurred nationwide on the New Year’s holiday, normally defined as stretching from 6 pm on New Year’s Eve through 11:59 pm on New Year’s Day, although depending on what day of the year New Year’s Day falls, the holiday period can range from December 30 through January 2. 

Common Causes of the Increase in Car Accidents During the Holidays

Some of the most frequent contributing factors to car accidents over the holidays include:

  • Increased traffic – The roads see much more traffic during the holidays, whether from people buzzing around town doing their holiday shopping or getting things together for a holiday party or dinner, or people driving long distances to visit family or friends for the holidays. The bottom line is that with more vehicles on the road, there is a greater chance of collisions. 
  • Distracted driving – The holidays can, unfortunately, be a stressful time for many people, who may feel anxious due to gift buying, planning or attending holiday events, or finishing up end-of-year tasks or milestones at work. This can lead to distracted driving as people are lost in their own thoughts, or road rage if drivers succumb to stress while behind the wheel. 
  • Drunk driving – The holidays are filled with parties, gatherings, and meals with family and friends. However, these are all opportunities for people to partake in alcohol. Unfortunately, some people who choose to drink at holiday events make the dangerous decision to then get behind the wheel while impaired. 
  • Drowsy/fatigued driving – The tasks that many of us have to accomplish at home and at work during the holiday season can put significant demands on our time and lead to less restful sleep. Combined with shorter days and earlier sunsets, drivers are much more likely to be on the road while drowsy or fatigued, especially in the late afternoon and evening hours. 
  • Out-of-town visitors – People visiting from out of town can pose a hazard on the road due to not being familiar with traffic patterns or being distracted trying to find their way. Visitors may even end up making dangerous mistakes due to being lost, such as ending up on the wrong side of the road or going the wrong way down a one-way street or access ramp. 
  • Inadequate vehicle maintenance – As people spend much of their income on events and gifts during the holidays, they may choose to skip necessary vehicle maintenance, which can lead to an accident when a mechanical failure occurs. 

Contact a Lake Worth Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Car Accident Case in Florida

Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to a car accident in Florida? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at Gonzalez & Cartwright, P.A. represent clients injured because of car accidents in Miramar, Coral Springs, Davie, Lake Worth, and throughout Florida. Call (561) 533-0345 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 813 Lucerne Ave., Lake Worth, FL 33460, as well as offices in Pompano Beach.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.

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