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The Car and Truck Fleet and Leasing Management Magazine

Thanksgiving Road Deaths Should Decline Again

November 22, 2014

If you drink over the holiday weekend, designate a sober driver or take alternate transportation, NSC advises. Photo courtesy of NHTSA.
If you drink over the holiday weekend, designate a sober driver or take alternate transportation, NSC advises. Photo courtesy of NHTSA.

The National Safety Council estimates that 418 traffic fatalities and another 44,700 injuries requiring medical attention may occur from car crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. The estimate is the latest evidence of a declining trend in road deaths since the council predicted 564 in 2007.

It’s estimated that 153 lives will be saved Thanksgiving weekend because of people wearing their safety belts, NSC said.

"A hallmark of Thanksgiving is traveling to be with family and friends, but whether it involves a short drive or a long road trip, the same risks apply," said Deborah A.P. Hersman, NSC president and CEO. "Sensible precautions can make the difference between a safe visit home or an unwelcome trip to the emergency room."

NSC recommends the following tips to stay safe on the roads this Thanksgiving weekend:

  • Buckle up every trip, every time — even when traveling short distances.
  • Refrain from all electronic device use — including hands-free — behind the wheel.
  • Secure children in size-appropriate restraints.
  • Don’t drink and drive since impairment begins with the first drink. If you drink, designate a sober driver or take alternate transportation.
  • Plan ahead and drive defensively, especially during bad weather.

The Thanksgiving holiday period begins at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 26, and ends at 11:59 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 30.

Evaluation of Recent Thanksgiving Holiday Period Estimates

      
Year Estimate 90% Confidence Interval Actual
2007 564 499-635 542
2008 479 415-551 484
2009 447 392-508 401
2010 441 378-513 417
2011 434 368-509 375
2012 451 384-528 405
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