With the approach of the holiday season, opportunities to gather with friends and loved ones grow more frequent. While these gatherings can be a special time to be with the ones you love and observe cherished traditions, they’re not without risk. Each year, hundreds of Americans are injured in motor vehicle crashes around the holiday season.
There are several steps you can take to make sure you’re traveling safely. Practicing safe driving habits can protect both you and other nearby motorists as you get behind the wheel this holiday season.
Don’t Drink and Drive
Many holiday gatherings involve sharing meals with those we love. Oftentimes, these meals include drinking alcohol. While drinking isn’t inherently dangerous, driving drunk can potentially be extremely harmful, both to you and surrounding vehicles. When driving drunk, your vision can be blurred, your judgment can be impaired, and your depth perception can be damaged. Not only is drunk driving dangerous, but it’s against the law. If you’ve had alcohol, it’s wise to designate another driver and not get behind the wheel yourself.
Check the Weather
As the year draws to a close, the weather patterns begin to change and the temperatures begin to drop. It’s important that you’re well aware of the weather before getting on the road this holiday season. Factors like snowfall, frozen roads, or increased precipitation can all be potential hazards to those who are unaware of them.
Be Aware of Crossing Animals
With the changing of the seasons comes a change in the local wildlife’s migration patterns. You’ll want to keep an eye out for crossing animals as you take to the roads this holiday season, as hitting a large animal can be extremely dangerous.
A few common examples of wildlife that are active at this time of year include:
If you should hit an animal, be sure to contact the local animal control authorities and check to make sure your vehicle has not sustained damage.
Be Sure Your Vehicle is Properly Maintained
Before going on any long trip, it’s important to make sure your vehicle is carefully maintained. Particularly in the wintertime, it’s important to check your tire pressure, as changing temperatures can cause it to drop. You can check the pressure in your tires by using a tire pressure gauge and comparing the number to the recommended psi (pounds per square inch) for your vehicle, which will be listed either in your driver’s manual or on a sticker inside the driver’s side door.
Another important step you can take is to make sure your headlights are in working condition. Driving at night can be dangerous if your visibility is impaired, so it’s important to make sure that both your brights and normal headlights are fully functional. In addition to your headlights, good windshield wipers are necessary, as they improve visibility when you’re driving through heavy precipitation. Make sure your windshield wipers are in working condition, especially in the wintertime, when precipitation is more frequent.
There are many factors that may cause you to become distracted behind the wheel. Be sure to get the proper amount of rest before driving, as drowsy driving can be dangerous. Additionally, you’ll want to avoid cell phone use or being distracted by other internal factors like changing the music or other passengers. Remaining alert is one of the best ways to ensure your safety on the roads this holiday season.
Need help? Give Evans Moore, LLC a Call Today
Dealing with the devastating effects of a motor vehicle accident can be difficult, particularly if you’ve been wrongfully injured. If you or someone you love has been injured through no fault of your own in a motor vehicle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
The team of top-rated South Carolina personal injury attorneys of Evans Moore, LLC is prepared to help you. For years, we’ve been representing clients just like you, reaching impressive settlements and favorable outcomes. We’re committed to providing excellent legal counsel in each and every case that we take on, working to reach justice for our clients in their motor vehicle accident cases.
If you’re ready to pursue the compensation to which you’re entitled, call Evans Moore, LLC today at (843) 995-5000. We’ll schedule a free preliminary consultation so that we can get a better understanding of your circumstances. If you’re ready to begin seeking justice for your injuries, call us today.