The holidays are a fun time of the year, filled with family gatherings, parties, and a variety of events. Calendars fill quickly—and with the pressure of holiday cooking and gift shopping, it is easy to spread yourself too thin. With a lot on your plate, distracted and aggressive driving becomes more of a risk that can lead to car accidents resulting in potentially serious personal injuries. The following highlights dangers to avoid and tips on how to stay safe behind the wheel.
Avoiding Common Driver Distractions
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that distracted driving continues to be one of the most common causes of car accidents and injuries, resulting in close to 3,500 traffic fatalities each year.
Most of us are aware of the dangers posed by using cell phones or texting when behind the wheel. But anything that causes your mind to wander or requires you to take your eyes off the road and your hands off the wheel could increase your risks. Actions to avoid, particularly at this time of year, include:
Thinking about future plans rather than paying attention to traffic
Being distracted by lights and holiday decorations
Turning to talk to other passengers or switching around radio stations
Grabbing meals on the go that require you to eat and drink while driving
Keeping Your Cool Behind The Wheel
Along with distracted driving, aggressive driving also becomes more common over the holidays. Rushing to complete gift shopping and dealing with increased holiday traffic due to both locals and tourists traveling through our area can cause you to act out in ways you may not at other times of the year.
The American Automobile Association (AAA) warns that aggressive driving behaviors, such as speeding, failure to yield, improper passing, and tailgating other drivers, are a factor in nearly half of all car accidents that occur. Something as simple as leaning on your horn or making angry gestures at other drivers can cause a situation to escalate, making intentional collisions and acts of violence among drivers more likely.
When driving over the holidays, there are some steps you can take to keep your cool behind the wheel:
Realize that you are likely to encounter some traffic, and give yourself plenty of time to get where you need to go
Put on some relaxing music and avoid focusing on the time or delays
Take deep breaths and remind yourself that getting angry only makes the situation worse
Be the bigger person, and do not take the bait if another driver engages in aggressive behavior
Contact Our Office For Help Today
Despite your best efforts, car accidents and injuries can still occur. If you suffer injuries as the result of another driver’s reckless or negligent actions, contact the Surasky Law Firm, LLC right away. We can arrange a consultation with our Aiken personal injury attorneys who can advise you on how to get the compensation you are entitled to. Call or contact our office online today.