Motorists are urged to be safe out there through the Memorial Day weekend. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), there will be more than 405 people throughout the U.S. who are killed during this holiday, from 6:00 p.m. on Friday through 11:59 p.m. on Monday.
In addition to these fatalities, officials estimate that close to 44,000 people will be injured in traffic accidents as well.
"Even one traffic death is too many," said Department of Public Safety Director Col. J. Christopher Murphy.
Our Montgomery car accident lawyers understand that the Memorial Day weekend is an important time for safety behind the wheel. Millions of Americans will be setting out during the long weekend on a much-needed vacation. And with more travelers on our roadways, the risks for an accident will be higher.
During this time, with the congested roadways, we're asking you to keep your cool behind the wheel and to be prepared. If you start to feel agitated behind the wheel, just take a second to breathe. There's no use in blowing your cool and getting into an altercation with another driver.
As you can expect, we'll likely see traffic delays. Your safest bet is to avoid speeding, tailgating, cutting off other drivers or disobeying traffic devices.
But there's more than just motor vehicle traffic to worry about -- bicyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians will be out in force. During this time, many residents will be out on two feet, or on two wheels, and will be enjoying the warm weather. Make sure your attention is on these vulnerable travelers, too. They've got rights to our roadways and those rights need to be protected.
We oftentimes talk about the risks and the consequences behind distracted driving, and this is where they all come into play. Troopers are asking you to put down the phone and the text messaging devices in the driver's seat. With this increase in traffic, 100 percent of your attention needs to be on the road. Don't think that you can multitask your way through this one.
Lastly, we'd like to remind you to buckle up! Officials with the NSC estimate that close to 150 lives may be saved this Memorial Day holiday period by seat belts. Another 100 lives could be saved it ALL motorists wore a seat belt.
Before you head out, make sure your vehicle is properly maintained. Make sure that your tires are properly inflated, the fluids under your hood are topped off and that you've got an emergency kit in your vehicle should anything happen. Always travel with a cell phone and make sure you've got an extra battery or a charger with you at all times. Preparation is the first and most effective key in preventing an accident.
In 2010, there were more than 20 people who were killed in Alabama traffic accidents during this holiday weekend.