Most people consider the holidays to be a wonderful time of the year. They provide us with the opportunity to travel and see family and friends we don't see all of the time, to shop for gifts for loved ones and send adorable holiday pictures of our pets and/or children.
Unfortunately, as some of our California readers may have realized, this time of the year also is responsible for a large number of motor vehicle accidents every year. But why is this the case? Below, we will look at three major contributors.
Did you see that awesome light display in the Johnson's yard? Or that really cool snow sculpture across the street? Do you see that person you are about to rear end because you're too busy paying attention to other things?
Deny it as most people might, the scene above is all too common during the holiday season. Twinkling lights and flashy decorations are typically out in full force in most cities and neighborhoods, giving people plenty to look at. If you consider this, coupled with drivers who are more engaged to the conversation they are having on the phone than the road, it's not difficult to see why the number of distracted driving cases rises during this time of the year.
"You better watch out, you better not drive" should be the motto every year around the holiday season. That's because, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, thousands of people die every year in alcohol-related crashes. In 2012 alone, more than 10,000 people nationwide were killed by drunk drivers.
The high number of parties that involve alcohol contribute to this number every year, even here in California, making the roadways dangerous for everyone else. But what is perhaps the most troubling is the fact that drunk-driving accidents are all easily preventable -- people simply have to make the right choice and not drink and drive.
High volume of traffic
Finally, consider for a moment the high volume of traffic during the holidays. Many of these drivers may be out of town guests who are unfamiliar with the roads, making them more likely to make reckless decisions behind the wheel. In an environment such as this, even the decision to change lanes without signaling can have deadly consequences. And with more people on the roads, there are more chances of collisions as well.