Thanksgiving Travel to Increase Risks of Massachusetts Car Accidents

Gas prices may be a little higher than expected, but that’s not stopping Americans from hitting the road over the Thanksgiving holiday. According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, nearly 43 million Americans will be traveling at least 50 miles over the Thanksgiving weekend. This is an increase of nearly 5 percent from the number of travelers from the previous year. The increase in roadway traffic is expected to increase the risks of a Massachusetts car accident. Drivers beware.
Despite the higher gas prices, drivers are still making the journey. Last week, the average price for a gallon of gas in the country was $3.39. Just a year ago, it averaged $2.88.

Our Boston car accident attorneys understand that our roadways will be congested with anxious drivers over the upcoming weekend. Motorists are urged to plan ahead and to be prepared to help ensure roadway safety. There are a few simple preparations that a driver can take to help to make sure they make it to their Turkey Day destination safely.

During Memorial Day travel was flat and travel actually decreased during both the 4th of July and Labor Day this year compared to the previous year. Experts suggest that travelers stayed home and kept an eye on their bank accounts, but are saying that finances are not a concern with Thanksgiving and many will venture out.

“Driving AAA’s projected increase in the number of Thanksgiving travelers is pent-up demand from Americans who may have foregone holiday travel the last three years,” said vice president of AAA Travel Services, Bill Sutherland.

A majority of Thanksgiving holiday weekend travelers will be taking road trips, although AAA expects that air travel is also expected to increase. AAA says that this year’s air travel will increase by about 2 percent from the previous year even though the Air Transport Association of America is forecasting a 2 percent decrease.

For the books, Thanksgiving weekend starts Wednesday the 23rd and continues through Sunday the 27th, according to CNN.

Road Trip Travel Checklist:

-Service your car before heading out on a long trip. Make sure a mechanic okay’s your tires, fluid levels, etc.

-Bring extra tools with you. It’s a good idea to bring a tire pressure gauge (check tire pressure often), flash light, jumper cables, hand wipes, water, a quart of oil, an extra fan belt, your vehicle manual, garbage bags, etc.

-Take a peek at your spare tire to make sure it’s easily accessible and is properly inflated.

-Make sure you have jacks in your vehicle and make sure they work.

-Check to make sure you’re able to remove all four tires.

-Always carry a road emergency kit.

-Bring a portable first aid kit.

-All passengers should have their own set of car keys.

-Make sure to have a road map. GPS devices are nice, but make sure to keep a paper map with you for backup.

-Check your route beforehand. Make sure there aren’t any events along your route that could hinder traffic. If so, find an alternate route.

-A few days before leaving, make sure that everything fits in your vehicle and does not hinder your visibility.

-Be aware of the road laws in states you’ll be traveling in as they can vary.

-Always be sure to bring your cell phone and its charger. Bring a written list of important phone numbers.

-Leave early and leave plenty of time to be spontaneous or to address delays.

-Be sure to take breaks often.

-Bring plenty of activities to entertain children: toys, games, music, a journal, etc.

If you, a family member or someone you love has been involved in a Boston car accident, contact Boston Injury Attorney Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 877-617-5333.

Additional Resources:

Crowded highways expected for Thanksgiving, by Aaron Smith, CNN
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Our Boston Car Accident Attorneys Support Drowsy Driving Prevention Week, Boston Car Accident Lawyer Blog, November 11, 2011

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