Tips to Avoid Accidents over the July 4 Holiday in Virginia
The July 4 holiday is one of the most dangerous times to be on the roads of the United States. A combination of congestion and drunk drivers proves a deadly cocktail in Virginia and elsewhere. However, you can take some basic tips to avoid accidents over the July 4 holiday in Virginia.
4th of July Highway Accident Statistics
Figures from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found the July 4 holiday is the most deadly time of the year in some U.S. cities.
Using statistics from 2008 to 2017, the NHTSA highlighted 531 deaths from 486 wrecks over the Independence Day holiday.
Houston, Texas is the most deadly July 4 driving city. The figures found 25 road deaths in the sprawling Texas city since 2008. July 4 is the most dangerous time of the year in San Antonio, Dallas, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Phoenix, Detroit, St. Louis, and Jacksonville, Florida.
This year is likely to be no different. According to AAA, 48.9 million travelers are planning a July 4 getaway. That’s 2 million more travelers than last year. The worst day to hit the roads will be July 3, AAA predicts. The organization expects to rescue nearly 367,000 stranded motorists.
It’s a real headache to end up broken down by the roadside in the summer heat. It’s even worse to be involved in an accident.
According to the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), the number of accidents and road deaths spike over the holidays. However, July 4 has proved less deadly on the roads of Virginia than Memorial Day and Labor Day.
In 2018, Labor Day was the most deadly holiday in the Commonwealth. Police recorded to 14 road deaths compared to 11 over Memorial Day and four on July 4. However, the July 4 counting period was just two days compared with four for Memorial Day and Labor Day.
The worst July 4 holiday on the roads of Virginia in recent years was 2014 when 11 people lost their lives on the highways.
The Commonwealth is ranked as the eighth safest July 4 state in a new comparison table released by ASecureLife.
Safe Driving Tips for Virginia Beach
Virginia Beach may be safer than Houston this July 4, but drivers and other party-goers should not be lulled into a false sense of security. The roads will be busier than normal and more people will be drinking. Here are some basic July 4 safety tips.
- Plan a safe route home before you leave
- Don’t drink and drive – appoint a designated driver or get an Uber or a Lyft
- Don’t allow impaired friends to get behind the wheel
- Call law enforcement if you see an intoxicated driver on the road
- Make sure you always wear a seat belt
- If you plan a July 4 road trip, leave early, plan your route, and be patient
- Take breaks to avoid fatigue
- Don’t be distracted by your phones, kids, or animals
- Make sure your car has been serviced before you set out on the road
- Ensure you have breakdown cover
Staying Safe at July 4 Barbecues
Auto accidents are not the only danger people face on July 4. Every year, numerous injuries are caused by fireworks in backyards and people get injured cooking barbecues. The following are firework and BBQ safety tips for July 4:
- Attend an organized firework event if possible
- Do not let off fireworks near homes and wooden structures
- Never let young children play with fireworks or light them
- Never relight fireworks that have failed to go off
- Set up a bucket of water near to fireworks in case of a fire
- Have a first aid kit close by to deal with minor injuries
- If you have a backyard barbecue make sure it’s attended at all times
- Don’t let kids near the hot grill
- Frequently wash your hands and ensure raw and cooked food is kept separate
We hope you have a great July 4 holiday and stay safe on the roads. If you end up hurt, please contact our Virginia injury lawyers.