Getting together with family members is one of the joys of the holidays. To catch up with siblings and cousins, many people hit the road. Unfortunately, holiday travel is dangerous.
At Fitzpatrick, Skemp & Butler, LLC, we have seen the real-world consequences of car accidents. We highly recommend that anyone traveling this holiday season follow these simple tips, which can help you and your loved ones reach your destination safe and sound. Call one of our Wisconsin auto accident attorneys if you are involved in a crash.
Have Your Car Serviced Before Heading Out
Servicing your car ensures it is in top condition when you head out on your trip. Imagine if your tire pressure is too low. On a long trip, the tire could blow, and you could immediately lose control of your vehicle and get into an accident. It pays to give your car a tune-up before you go on a trip.
Give Yourself Plenty of Time to Reach Your Destination
Some people travel long distances during the holidays. You should break up any trip into manageable chunks so that you are not driving all night. Fatigued driving is very real—especially if you are headed home immediately after eating a big holiday meal. You can reduce the impact of fatigue by taking a nap before leaving or possibly spending the night and leaving in the morning. If necessary, rent a hotel room along the way.
Also, you never want to drive too fast, which happens when people are running late. Driving too fast for conditions in the winter is a leading cause of collisions.
Never Drink and Drive
It’s never acceptable to drive after drinking alcohol. Sadly, it’s more likely to happen during the holiday season. Maybe you go to that office holiday party and throw back a drink or two just to fit in (or survive a party with your coworkers). This year, drink non-alcoholic alternatives or get a rideshare to travel back home.
Wear Seat Belts
A seat belt dramatically reduces the risk of serious injury in a collision. Some people like to take their belts off during long trips, or at least shimmy out of the shoulder strap. We recommend you don’t do that. Instead, possibly adjust your seat for more comfort but leave the belt on for maximum protection.
Limit Distractions While Driving
It’s easy to get distracted during the holidays. Maybe you got a new device as a gift, like a GPS, or a new phone. You should stow these devices until you reach your destination. Traffic can also be unusually busy during the holidays, depending on when you drive, and you want to be 100% focused on driving safely.
Plan for Inclement Weather
Snow, ice, rain, and freezing rain are all possibilities any day of the week in Wisconsin. Check ahead to find out the weather and reduce your speed, if necessary. If the weather is too bad, you should leave early or possibly skip a trip altogether.
Your Wisconsin Law Firm after an Accident
Our law firm extends warm holiday greetings to you and your family. If you are involved in a crash this holiday season, feel free to reach out to us.