The Thanksgiving holiday period is a dangerous time for travelers. Many people drive to spend time with their loved ones, and some families travel to numerous houses. Motorists tend to let their guards down during the holiday season; however, this can be detrimental.
In order to prevent a car accident during the holiday season, one should practice extra caution while traveling. Families can be careful this Thanksgiving by taking a few precautionary measures before leaving the house and while traveling home after dinner.
Make Sure the Car is in Good Condition
A visit to a trusted mechanic for a check-up can assuage worries of a sudden breakdown. A driver can also conduct some due diligence on their own in the form of topping off fluids, testing all the lights, checking the tires, and filling up the tank. If a vehicle is not drivable, another car should be used for any Thanksgiving-related trips.
Check All Car Seats
Car seats keep babies and young children safe. Even a properly installed car seat can start to loosen over time. Double-checking a car seat is a quick way to prevent a tragedy. At the same time, a motorist may want to ensure that the car seat is in good condition as well.
Examine the Roadside Emergency Kit
It is vital to have a roadside emergency kit in every car. These kits usually contain jumper cables, flares, and first aid products. Over time, some items may start to wear out or expire. Buying a new kit before driving long distances makes a lot of sense. Additionally, kits are fairly inexpensive and easy to obtain.
Prepare the Car for an Emergency
People who expect to spend a lot of time on the road during Thanksgiving will want to equip their vehicles with added comforts. This includes a warm sweater, an extra set of shoes, a heavier coat, or even a blanket. Temperatures are known to fluctuate wildly, especially in western Pennsylvania and nearby areas. Extra bottles of water and non-perishable foods should also be included, just in case.
Review Weather Reports Before Traveling
Drivers should be review various weather reports before traveling. Leaving early or spending the night at a relative’s house can prevent dangerous situations. Keeping an eye on the weather radar can prevent a car wreck.
Be Mindful of Construction Sites
Drivers should always review routes before traveling. It is important to look for possible construction zones to prevent delays and accidents. If one sees a construction site, they should use an alternate route, even if it takes more time.
Keep Focus on the Road
Accident experts know that a top cause of car crashes is distracted driving. Most people immediately associate texting with distracted driving, but this is not the only distraction. A driver may be distracted by passengers, tuning the radio, eating, and children in the back seat. Always keep focus on the road, and put away the cellphone while driving.
Watch Out for Deer
Pennsylvania has a large deer population. In November, bucks and does are quite active. Motorists and passengers need to carefully watch for any deer. A collision with even a small deer can wreck a car and cause severe injuries to drivers and passengers.
Do Not Rush
All drivers should follow the posted speed limits. Police officers tend to be in full force on Thanksgiving Day, and they will not hesitate to issue speeding tickets. Leaving early and having realistic expectations of how long it will take to get from location to location will help a motorist keep a consistent speed.
Keep Pets Safe
Pets can be restless while their owners are traveling. They should be kept in travel-safe pet carriers while the vehicle is moving. Pets will need to get out for bathroom breaks if the journey takes longer than an hour. This helps keep pets from feeling uncomfortable and acting out, which can distract the person behind the wheel.
Assign a Designated Driver
A lot of families serve alcoholic beverages during Thanksgiving. A driver who intends to be on the road Thanksgiving night should avoid drinking. Even one drink can impair driving abilities. In Pennsylvania, acquiring a charge for drunk driving is very serious. Having a designated driver is extremely important.
Try to Drive During the Day
It gets darker in late November due to the end of Daylight Savings Time. Some drivers feel uncomfortable driving in the dark. Therefore, they should either make plans to leave Thanksgiving festivities early in the evening or stay overnight at the host’s house.
What Should I Do After an Accident?
A car accident can still occur, even though one is practicing safety precautions. Knowing what to do helps keep everyone focused afterwards. Be sure to find out the correct steps to take immediately after a crash. If an accident does happen, a victim should talk to a lawyer right away. A lawyer can assist with a personal injury claim.
Pittsburgh Car Accident Lawyers at AlpernSchubert P.C. Help Crash Victims Recover Damages
If you plan to travel for Thanksgiving, practice defensive driving. If an accident does occur, you have legal options. Our Pittsburgh car accident lawyers at AlpernSchubert P.C. help victims get compensation for their injuries. Call us at 412-765-1888 or contact us online for a free consultation today. Located in Pittsburgh, we serve clients throughout western Pennsylvania, including Allegheny County, Lawrence County, and Washington County.