As we enter the holiday shopping season, drivers must take extra precaution to avoid hazards and common car accident risks. Fortunately, there are a few steps that can help prevent fender-benders, pedestrian accidents and other types of collisions that can occur.
Holiday Driving Safety Tips
Here are a few tips to stay safe on the roads this season:
- Do not text or talk on the phone while driving: Although it can be tempting to multi-task while between stores or looking for a place to park, it is important to remain focused on the road at all times. Distracted driving increases the risk of an accident with another vehicle or a pedestrian.
- Shop during off-peak hours: This helps to avoid the last-minute rush, when many holiday accidents take place. You may also want to consider shopping online to avoid the stress and save on fuel.
- Choose a parking space that’s far away: Park farther away from a store or mall entrance or exit. You’ll be less exposed to pedestrian and vehicle traffic, lowering the probability of an accident.
- Always park in well-lit areas: Properly illuminated surroundings allow you to clearly see the space around your car.
- Never remove seat belts until the vehicle is at rest: Accidents can happen anytime, so it’s best to be prepared. Even collisions at low speeds can cause serious injuries to the driver or passengers.
- Obey posted rules and signage: While signs are typically obvious on most roads, traffic laws aren’t as concrete in many parking areas. However, most Florida parking lots have regulations for pedestrian and driver safety concerning speed limits, stop signs, one-way arrows, and marked crosswalks. Avoid cutting across parking lot lines and empty spaces – drive between rows and watch out for other cars at all times.
Holiday Driving and Accident Statistics
- November is typically the peak period in the US for car accidents each year.
- Nearly 25% of all “Black Friday” accidents involve minor collisions that occur in parking lots.
- Drivers “backing out” without looking back or without being able to see in all directions are the top causes of all parking lot fender benders.
- At least 10% of reported car insurance accident claims involve accidents that occur in parking lots.
- 54% of New Year’s and 38% of Christmas time traffic fatalities result from drunk driving.