For many Tennesseans, this Thanksgiving will be the first time in over a year that they will visit family and friends. In fact more than 57% of Americans plan to travel during the Thanksgiving holiday, with 84% choosing to drive. Although I’m glad we can all celebrate in person again, as a car accident Memphis attorney for over 30 years, I know Thanksgiving can be one of the most dangerous times of year to be on the road.

With crowded roads and cooler temperatures, even a short holiday drive can turn into a terrible accident. This is why holiday road safety should be a top priority, especially after all we have been through this past year. So, before you head out on the road this Thanksgiving, I want to share some tips with you on how to stay safe during holiday travel.

5 tips to stay safe on the roads this Thanksgiving

One: Take your car in for a tune-up

It’s always a good idea to get a tune-up before a long drive. Even if you get your car serviced regularly, it’s an easy way to avoid any unwelcome surprises on the road. Also, if you are planning on driving somewhere that may get snow or ice, make sure you winterize your vehicle (e.g. winter tires, fill up on antifreeze, and make sure you use windshield wiper fluid that is designed for cold temperatures). 

Two: Be prepared

Before leaving, check travel times, traffic, and weather for your route. Then, once you’re on the road, use a reliable GPS app to see if there are accidents up ahead, where traffic is slowing down, and if any faster alternate routes open up.

Three: Be patient

With more than 40 million Americans traveling for Thanksgiving, traffic is inevitable. I know it’s easier said than done, but try to stay calm and patient while on the road. A cool head will not only keep you and your family safe, but will make the drive more enjoyable. Some of my best advice is to stock up on plenty of snacks and water before you leave home. Hunger tends to make any road delay feel worse.

Four: Be on the lookout for impaired drivers.

Unfortunately, many folks drink and drive during the holidays. Not only on Thanksgiving itself, but on the Wednesday beforehand and the weekend afterward. Your best bet is to stay vigilant and drive defensively. This is especially true when driving at night.

Also, if you plan to have a drink or two this coming holiday, be responsible and plan ahead. Use public transportation, a rideshare service, or find a designated driver.

Five: Avoid fatigue

Did you know you are three times more likely to be in a car crash if you’re fatigued? Fatigue is a common cause of car accidents, particularly during the holiday season with many people putting in long hours at work on Wednesday and then heading onto the road for the next day’s festivities. If you have to drive after a full day of work, try to travel with a friend and take turns. Or if you feel tired, pull over and rest. A twenty minute delay for a much-needed nap is better than risking a serious car accident.

Speak with an experienced car accident Memphis attorney for FREE.

I hope these safety tips keep you and your family safe this Thanksgiving, but I know some accidents are unavoidable. If you’ve been the victim of someone else’s reckless driving this holiday season, one of our experienced car accident attorneys are here to help you.

Contact us online or call (901) 327-2100 for a free consultation – no strings attached. Our attorneys understand the physical and emotional toll of a car accident. We’ll answer all of your questions, discuss your unique situation, and come up with a plan to get you the compensation you deserve.

Give us a call today. We’re here to help.