As the summer approaches, many people across Kentucky are getting ready for the summer travel season, heading to the lakes, amusement parks, and other attractions.  This means that there are many cars on the road.  This situation gets worse when the travel occurs on one of the three major holidays during the summer.  Memorial Day weekend is the start of the official summer season, then there is the Fourth of July holiday and Labor Day.  Holiday weekends throughout the year result in more car accidents.  Part of the reason behind the increase is that there simply are more vehicles on the road.  Some people may not drive for long distances on a regular basis, but get on the road for a holiday weekend or summer vacation, leading to more tentative and less experienced drivers sharing a congested highway.  In addition, many holiday gatherings involve alcohol, which leads to an increase in drivers being under the influence.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has analyzed the six most dangerous holiday weekends, which are:

  • Memorial Day – The start of the summer season has the most traffic fatalities, many of which involve alcohol.  It is important to take care while driving over this weekend;
  • New Year’s Eve and Day – The combination of parties and drinking lead to many drunk driving accidents;
  • Thanksgiving – The time period before and after this festive day contributes to the high accident rate, including the heaviest travel day of the year the Wednesday before Thanksgiving;
  • Fourth of July – Family barbecues and fireworks celebrations result in a lot of driving, much of which is done after drinking;
  • Labor Day – The close of the summer season typically is marked by celebrations as summer vacations come to a conclusion.  Many people travel over this time period, resulting in many tragic crashes; and
  • Christmas – In the days surrounding the holiday, there are many motor vehicle accidents.

There are factors other than alcohol that contribute to the high rate of accidents over the holidays, including weather such as rain, fog, sleet, or snow.  In addition, the day of the week on which the holiday falls may influence the risk of accidents.  When the holiday is mid-week, there are fewer people who travel long distances to make a long weekend out of the occasion.

There is an additional police presence on many holiday weekends in order to counter some of the dangerous driving behaviors.  The NHTSA has partnered with Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) to launch safe driving campaigns, which have led to a reduction in drunk driving fatalities in many states, but there remains a significant number of alcohol-related crashes.

In addition to remaining aware of other drivers when traveling over a holiday, it is important to make sure that everyone in the vehicle is wearing a safety belt.  According to the National Safety Council (NSC), the use of a seatbelt may reduce the chance of a fatality in a crash by 45%.  This is a significant reduction.

Murphy & Associates Advocate for Car Crash Victims

Whether you were injured in a car crash over a holiday weekend or on any other day, the resulting injuries may require a long recuperation period as well as time away from your job.  Depending on the extent of the harm, it may be impossible to return to your former career.  The experienced and skilled Kentucky Car Accident Attorneys at Murphy & Associates understand what crash victims need in order to reclaim their previous quality of life.  We will work with you to develop a legal strategy that meets the needs of you and your family.  Call us at (502) 532-8395 to schedule an initial case evaluation.  We only receive our fee when we recover money for you.