Airline agencies are expecting the Thanksgiving holiday week to be an especially busy one for air travel, but you can bet on jam-packed roads as well. November 25, 29 and 30 are projected to be the busiest for air travel, and you can expect those days to be busy for travel-by-car as well. To avoid auto accidents as you make your way out of Louisville or wherever you happen to be travelling from, please consider these safe driving tips:
- Drive sober. Drunk driving is a major contributor to accidents in the US every day. Driving while inebriated not only puts your own safety at risk, it puts the health and safety of all the people in vehicles around you at risk.
- Make sure everyone is wearing their seat belts. Adult seat belt use is the most effective way to prevent deaths and injuries in motor vehicle accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Make sure everyone in your vehicle is buckled in before you begin driving.
- Plan trips around busy travel days: Traffic during the busiest travel days of the year can choke up the country's major thoroughfares, including Interstates 64, 65 and 71 as you try to get out of Louisville. If possible, try to avoid travelling on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the Sunday following. That's of course easier said than done. If you can't avoid driving when it's busy, do take the time to exercise some extra caution and patience as everybody tries to get out of town.
- Schedule driving at times when you're the most awake and alert. Many people believe they can simply power through fatigue if they get tired while driving. Quite the opposite. Drowsy driving has some of the same mental and physical effects as drunk driving, and it is a high risk behavior. If you feel yourself getting tired, pull over into a safe spot and take a break.
- Don't forget your tech, but use it responsibly: Bring navigational aids in case you get lost or need to find an alternate route. Whether those aids include a GPS, smart phones or a tried-and-true paper map, make sure you have someone navigating who isn't behind the wheel. Distracted driving is a major cause of car wrecks.
- Snacks, water, full tank of gas, tip-top auto shape: No road trip would be properly prepared for without food and water in case you become stranded for some reason. You should also perform some preparatory maintenance on your vehicle, including checking the tire pressure, checking the fluid levels, and making sure your windshield wipers are working.
Have a safe, happy Thanksgiving in 2015!
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