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Auto Accidents Spike on Thanksgiving Week

The busiest travel holiday for drivers is often the most dangerous.

Avoid Thanksgiving Car Accidents

Bob Pool / Shutterstock.com

Thanksgiving has long had the reputation of being the single most busy travel time for Americans all across the country, including right here in Virginia. Chances are that record numbers of Virginians will hit the road over this upcoming Thanksgiving holiday week. Last year AAA estimated that 1.4 million people across the commonwealth traveled for the holiday, and by the end of November, sobering headlines had reminded us that more cars on the road means more automobile accidents. According to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles and Highway Safety Office, the 2017 5-day Thanksgiving holiday was a dangerous time to to be on the road: in the state of Virginia alone 746 people were injured in automobile accidents, and 14 were killed.

It goes without saying that safety behind the wheel should always be your top priority–wear your seatbelt, obey all traffic laws, and don’t be a distracted driver–but this holiday season we have one more tool to add to your safe-driving toolbelt: plan your travel for a day and time when traffic is expected to be relatively light. Google offers one of the coolest new ways to figure out when it makes most sense to hit the road, with its “Mapping Thanksgiving” webpage. Not only can this tool help you figure out when traffic will be heaviest and lightest in your area, but it can also tell you lots of interesting things about what sorts of activities and shopping people are up to around the holiday.

For more on avoiding personal injury this Thanksgiving, check out our guide to dealing with family…just kidding, you’re on your own there.

Safe travels, and save room for dessert!