Due to fatigue, impaired, distracted or careless driving, Statista's Katharina Buchholz reports that traffic fatalities spike during holiday breaks every year.
Many of the deaths happening on America's roads are preventable, according to the National Safety Council.
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The organization projects that 507 traffic deaths will occur between tonight, Wednesday, Nov. 22, and the end of Sunday.
Independence Day, which was on a Tuesday in 2023, is counted as an equally long holiday period this year - running from Friday night to Tuesday night. According to the latest estimates, July 4 cost 619 lives this year due to traffic accidents.
All other holidays in 2023 have break periods of 3.5 days associated with them, causing fatality estimates to be somewhat lower.
Christmas Day in 2018 as well as New Year's and Independence Day in 2019 all ran for 4.5 days, as did Thanksgiving, which is always on a Thursday. In this most comparable scenario, July 4 was still the deadliest holiday while the results for the rest were more similar, despite Memorial Day and Labor Day always running for 3.5 days. Alcohol-impaired-driving fatalities in fact diverge more predictably from the annual average on these two occasions, as they do on Independence Day and New Year's Day.
Besides designating a sober driver or arranging alternative transportation for the holidays, the National Safety Council proposes practicing defensive driving, buckling up, avoiding distractions and being wary of fatigue as the roads fill up once more ahead of the holiday season.