AAA predicted heavy travel this holiday season, with a 3.5% increase over last year. An estimated 2.8 million Virginians (over one-third of our population) are expected to travel 50 miles or more from Dec 23 through Jan 4. With almost 91% of those travelers going by car, make sure you take extra precautions when you hit the road, whether you’re actually traveling or just going to the grocery store. Give yourself plenty of time to reach your destination, accounting for traffic or possible weather conditions. Let aggressive drivers pass you, and if someone cuts you off, just slow down and give them room; don’t engage in retaliatory behavior. Make sure you have a roadside emergency kit on hand.
New Year’s Day is number six on Forbes.com’s list of deadliest holidays in the U.S., Thanksgiving is number one and Christmas comes in fifth. If you know there will be drinking alcohol at a holiday event, plan for a designated driver or call a cab- no exceptions! According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, almost half of traffic fatalities on Jan 1 involve alcohol. They also report that 21-24 year-olds have the highest level of alcohol-related crashes during this time.
Be safe on the home front as well. Don’t post on social media that you will be traveling, and avoid posting photos until you return home. Use timers on some of the lights in your house to make it appear that you are still home. If possible, ask a neighbor to keep an eye on your house, and have them to call you if something seems wrong. Visit our blog for more holiday travel tips.
We hope you have a wonderful and safe New Year’s Eve!