The Fourth of July falls on a Thursday this year, which means most people will make it a long holiday weekend from work. The Fourth of July is not only one of the country’s most popular holiday weekends, but it’s also one of the most deadly. The holiday accounts for hundreds of deaths every year, and this year’s July Fourth is not expected to be any different.
The National Safety Council predicts that this Fourth of July weekend will be just as deadly as previous years, with an approximate 565 people expected to be killed in motor vehicle and other accidents. It also predicts around 64,000 injuries in accidents occurring over the holiday.
These predictions were made based on previous crash data. For instance in 2017, there were a total of 601 fatalities in traffic accidents over the holiday weekend. That was a significant 23 percent increase from the previous year. At least 39 percent of those accidents involved a drunk driver.
This Fourth of July, be sure to take safety precautions to avoid becoming yet another traffic accident statistic. Most accidents that occur over the Fourth of July holiday involve, not surprisingly, drunk drivers who are driving back home after a party or the evening’s fireworks. Be a responsible driver, and avoid driving if you have been drinking. If you are partying in a group, designate a person whose job will be to stay sober so he or she can drive you all safely home.
Use ride sharing apps like Uber is also a good tool to get you home safely after a night celebrating. With rides so easy to book, there are simply no excuses for you to drink and drive on a holiday that is likely to see a high number of car and pedestrian accidents.
If you are hosting a Fourth of July barbecue, make arrangements for your guests to get home safe after the party. Remember, good friends don’t let each other drive drunk. If your guest is showing signs of having a few too many, such as swaying on his feet, being belligerent, or other signs of intoxication, take keys from his hand and call for a taxi. This is for both his protection and yours. Remember, if your guest drinks too much alcohol at your event and causes an accident, you may be held liable for damages under Georgia’s social host liability laws.
Practice defensive driving in order to avoid an accident. It’s likely that there will be more intoxicated motorists on the roads over the weekend so you should be cautious and drive accordingly. If it is not necessary to drive, don’t do so. If you are planning on motorcycling over the weekend, you may want to reconsider as well. Drivers don’t always see motorcyclists in the road, but an intoxicated driver is even less likely to see a motorcyclist especially in time to take action to avoid an accident. The same holds true for pedestrians.
And always avoid speeding while driving. It’s harder to stop in time to avoid a collision when you are travelling at high speeds. Remember, vehicular traffic may not be the only risk you face on the Fourth of July holiday. There are likely to be plenty of pedestrians too.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident, call an Atlanta car accident lawyer at the Katz Law Firm, and discuss whether you have grounds for a viable claim for compensation for your losses.