The 5th of July


The 4th of July is almost here and the majority of people have some type of plans to celebrate Independence Day.  Of course, those plans do not include a car accident, but because folks are heading to the mountains, the lake, a friend’s backyard BBQ or to watch a parade, etc., the roadways are expected to be very busy and dangerous.  In fact, while the 4th of July is usually the peak of summer travel, this year is expected to be a recording setting weekend.   Based on statistics from prior years, The National Safety Council estimates 599 people will lose their lives in car accidents over the 4th of July holiday and another 68,000 will be injured.   Here are some tips for staying safe on the roads this holiday and living to enjoy the 5th of July. 

Perhaps, the number one tip for drivers during the holiday weekend is: do not drive while impaired.  Historically, 40% of all fatal car accidents on the 4th of July involve drivers who were impaired by alcohol.   Before the festivities get underway, make a plan for getting home safely.  Designate a sober driver.  Take an Uber, Lyft or taxi to and from your destination. Ask the party host if you can spend the night.  But one thing you should not do is ride an electric scooter while under the influence thinking it is a safer alternative to driving as it can be just as dangerous especially for serious head injuries (most riders do not wear helmets) and broken bones.

If the thought of causing a serious accident is not a sufficient deterrent, then also think about the cost of a DUI.  The average DUI costs $10,000 in attorney fees, court costs, fines, lost work and increased insurance rates.  In addition to jail time, you could lose your license which might also cause you to lose your job.

Other things you can do to protect yourself this holiday are:

  • Wear your seatbelt and insist that everyone else in your vehicle wear one as well.  Seatbelts increase your chance of surviving a car accident by 50%.
  • Slow down.  As we said, this is possibly going to be a record-setting travel holiday, and speeding is a cause in roughly 1/3 of fatal accidents.
  • Avoid road rage.  Look, we know there are bad drivers out there, but be patient.  Leave yourself plenty of time to get to your destination.  Listen to calming music, a podcast or an audiobook to help reduce stress in the car. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, aggressive driving is a factor in 66% of car accidents and 20 murders are committed each year as a result of road rage.
  • Make sure your vehicle is in good driving condition before heading out.  Are all your tail lights and turn signals working?  Are there any warning lights displayed?  Are your tires properly inflated?
  • If you trip is long, be sure to take rest breaks so that you stay mentally sharp behind the wheel.

At the Law Offices of John Day, we hope everyone enjoys a safe and fun 4th of July.  But more than that, we hope everyone enjoys the 5th of July as well.  As always, our award-winning attorneys are here if you need us.

Nashville: 615-669-3993

Murfreesboro: 615-867-9900

Brentwood: 615-742-4880

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