U.S. Department of Transportation says summer driving is high risk

man driving and using GPS

The U.S. Department of Transportation cautions that summer months account for a higher number of auto accidents and traffic fatalities than most other times of the year. While the Thanksgiving long weekend is statistically the most dangerous holiday for drivers, Labor Day, Independence Day, and Memorial Day rank as the second, third, and fourth most dangerous holidays. This is why law enforcement agencies step up patrols, license checks, DUI checkpoints, and seat belt enforcement efforts at these times. With some ground rules for young drivers and basic precautions, you can keep you and your loved ones from being an unfortunate statistic while traveling this summer. If an accident does occur, speak with a car accident personal injury lawyer.

Memorial Day Weekend kicks off summer driving season

The American Automobile Association predicts the number of people traveling by car over the Memorial Day weekend of 2016 will be the highest number since 2005. Fueled by lower gas prices and a greatly improved economy, approximately 33.9 million Americans are expected to drive 50 miles or more for the holiday. There were 43,510 traffic fatalities for the entire year of 2005. Auto accident deaths have decreased since then. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, there were 32,675 auto accident fatalities for 2014. More than 16,950 of those deaths occurred from April to the end of the summer driving season in September. Summertime wrecks cost American drivers billions of dollars each year. For drivers under the age of 20, the risk of having a car accident during the summer is three times that of drivers in other age groups.

Teenage drivers are at the highest risk

For drivers and passengers between the ages of 15 and 20, more motor vehicle fatalities happen in summer than any other time of year. Young drivers have less experience, are more likely to drive distracted, and are driving more because they are out of school. Illinois has laws regarding the ages and number of passengers allowed in a car with drivers under 20. Victims of young driver accidents should consult with a car accident personal injury lawyer. If you have young drivers in your family, consider purchasing a GPS device that can alert you to unsafe driving behavior. Do not allow new drivers to take long trips or drive at night. It is better to enforce unpopular rules rather than have a young driver involved in a summer driving auto accident.