Sheriff's Message History

Travel Safely This Holiday Season

November 26, 2013

The holidays are here and many of us will be on the roads, travelling to see friends and family, or going shopping to catch that bargain on sale.

That means we are likely to need to deal with more traffic on our roadways and in our parking lots. And while the holidays can be a fun and pleasant time, they can also be more stressful.

So take some steps to beat the stress.

Leave a little early so you don't feel rushed. If you feel rushed, you may find yourself driving too fast or becoming impatient with other drivers. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, speeding is one of the most prevalent factors that contributes to traffic crashes.

Watch out for other drivers who may be rushing or may be distracted. We have all seen drivers who change lanes, dodging in and out of traffic, to try to make up some time only to be stopped at the same traffic light as many of those they passed. Don't get distracted yourself. The new law that bans texting while driving went into effect in October. But texting isn't the only thing that can be distracting while you are driving. Anything that causes you to take your eyes off the road, your hands off the steering wheel or your mind off your driving is a distraction. It only takes a second for a crash to happen.

And, of course, if you are going to consume some “holiday spirits,” make sure you have a designated driver. According to the CDC, alcohol-impaired driving accounted for nearly one-third of the traffic related deaths in the US in 2010. Nobody wants to celebrate Thanksgiving from a hospital or the jail or worse. So, please, don't drink and drive.

Drive defensively and have a safe and happy holiday season.

Sheriff Bill Prummell

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