The holiday season is a time for family, fun and stress. The pressure to get things done for the holidays, whether searching for gifts or shopping for family dinners, can cause us to become overwhelmed. Often we are rushing when we should be taking greater care. Everyone wants to have happy and safe holidays, but the statistics speak to the inherent dangers during this time of year. Not only are Atlanta car accidents possible in busy shopping areas, there are quick-moving delivery trucks working on getting Christmas gifts out to their lucky recipients. There are parents wanting to make their kids’ holidays “perfect” and moving too quickly to get it all done. The nature of this holiday season is a rush to get it all ready and to hurry up to celebrate. All of this stacks up for some great holiday fun and good reason to slow down and pay attention, here is why.
The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) notes that in recent years, as many as 15,000 injuries occurred during the holiday months just from decorating alone! Every year, these estimates have been on the rise. Simple activities like tree decorating can turn very dangerous, from falling off of ladders to stepping on ornaments to serious back and spinal injuries and burns, the season to be jolly is also the season to take greater care. Fire prevention is critical during this time. Avoid doing things like tossing wrapping paper into the fireplace or failing to keep your Christmas tree watered. Also do not ever leave a candle unattended. We all know these common sense things, but when we are tired, rushed and we have excited kids running around our homes or relatives visiting, we can lose focus and do some things that are inherently unsafe.
In addition to the hazards in our homes, another area of holiday safety involves greater frequency of motor vehicle crashes involving trucks, cars and motorcycles. The American Automobile Association advises that there are many things families can to do keep safe on the roads during this time of year. Among those are to make sure your vehicle is in good working order before starting that trip to grandma’s house; have your car and tires inspected before traveling; keep your cell phone and charger in your car and get an app for your phone that let’s you request help quickly without having to make a phone call.
Collisions claims for accidents increase about 20 percent in the month of December. Holiday shopping and travel can lead to the last thing on everyone’s list, an Atlanta car accident. This can happen because drivers are distracted and stressed which can impair cognition and judgment. Your car or motorcycle might end up being struck by another vehicle making a quick turn to get that great parking space or driving too fast. And with more drivers on the road going to and from holiday parties, there are greater risks of impaired drivers who are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Another factor in holiday driving peril, is fatigue. The statistics show that drivers need more than five hours of sleep to be able to drive safely. Anything less than that, can be extremely problematic for driving safety. And during the holidays, we know that sleep is often not as good as at other times of the year.
A survey done by a major insurance company revealed that 32 percent of drivers become more aggressive during the holiday season. Road rage is more likely during the holidays, something which is puzzling given that it is the season of giving. There is greater frequency of parking lot congestion and with that, annoyed drivers that end up in vehicle collisions and pedestrian accidents. Atlanta area malls and shopping centers are busier and busier this time of year. Congestion is expected and so are frayed nerves. Instead of slowing down, most drivers speed up and cause injury or harm to other drivers or pedestrians.
So please be safe on the roads this holiday season and please make sure to remember those in need. If you have any questions after an accident, please contact Scholle Law for a free evaluation of your situation and your legal rights.
Safe and Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year from all of us at Scholle Law.