How can I Stay Safe During Memorial Day Weekend?

For many people in the United States, Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer. Since the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has caused prolonged isolation, people will likely be out in large numbers to travel and visit over the holiday weekend. That means the return of heavy traffic, especially around popular resort areas. The holiday weekend averages around 358 fatal car accidents annually, according to the National Safety Council (NSC). The National Coalition for Safer Roads (NCSR) reports that red light violations are 27 percent higher during Memorial Day weekend than other holiday weekends.

Not only will more cars be out, one should expect to see enhanced law enforcements in certain areas. Some areas will have designated checkpoints to deter drunk driving. The following list contains some ways to keep safe on the roads during Memorial Day weekend.

Prepare the Car

Packing for a weekend getaway usually means filling the car with food and suitcases. Before any of that happens, make sure the car is prepared for a longer drive. Even with more drivers staying home for work, taking some time to inspect the car often yields benefits throughout the summer.

The change in temperatures can alter tire pressure. While newer cars alert drivers when one side is lower, it is smart to check all four tires before a long trip and fill to recommended levels. Windshield wipers that were busy through the snow and early rain may warrant replacing before summer starts. Poor visibility in a sudden downpour can increase the likelihood of an accident.

Fill the tank before leaving, especially if the trip is over 200 miles or one is going to an unfamiliar area. Gas prices will vary and are usually higher around waterside resorts. While packing the car for the long weekend, bring an emergency roadside kit. Have a first aid kit, blankets, water, snacks, jumper cables, and other useful items at the ready in case of an accident.

Plan the Route

Those who have not been frequently driving because of the pandemic may require extra preparation. Try to allocate more time getting there, especially if the area is unfamiliar. Take direct routes over highways. Research potentially different traffic patterns, exits, or newly tolled roads. If the trip will be over three hours, allow some time to stop, stretch, and rest. Stop if one is getting tired and needs something to eat. If heading towards a heavily trafficked area, bring snacks for the car if expecting to sit for a while. If possible, avoid traveling on Friday afternoon, this is when the roads are the most crowded. While activity has been down over the pandemic, prepare for traffic levels to return as more people become vaccinated.

Drive Defensively

Police enforcement usually increases over the holiday weekend, so be prepared. Do not drink and drive or ride with anyone who has been drinking. Avoid texting while driving, along with other devices that will distract drivers. Practice defensive driving measures, including wearing a seat belt, signaling when changing lanes, and keeping ample following distances.

Even with safety precautions, a collision can still happen. For help after a car accident, a victim should seek legal representation.

Media Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Fight on the Behalf of Collision Victims

Crowded roads mean car wrecks will happen over Memorial Day weekend. If you are injured in a collision, an experienced lawyer can determine if you are eligible for compensation. The Media car accident lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello can handle your claim. Call us at 610-892-4940 or contact us online for a free consultation. Based in Media, Pennsylvania, we are pleased to serve clients throughout Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lancaster, Montgomery County, Norristown, Philadelphia, Reading, and West Chester, Pennsylvania.