With Thanksgiving approaching – and many stores already playing Christmas carols in preparation for the holiday rush – the holiday season is drawing near. While this is traditionally a time of family gatherings, feasts, laughter, love, and kindness, many people’s holiday cheer is unfortunately cut short by an unexpected personal injury. Fortunately, there are several ways that you can minimize risk of an accident this holiday season and avoid any unwanted trips to the emergency room.
- Beware of drunk drivers: The time from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day is the most dangerous time of year to drive due to increased holiday traffic and a greater concentration of intoxicated drivers. According to the United States National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), roughly 25,000 people are injured in traffic accidents caused by alcohol during this period, with 40% of traffic-related deaths during Christmas and New Year’s involving drunk drivers. To stay safe, keep your distance from vehicles whose driver appears to be exhibiting signs of intoxication and never get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol. Not only do you risk being arrested for DUI – you could also severely injure yourself or someone else.
- Drive defensively: Snowy conditions during the chilly winter months can make the roads extremely slick. To minimize your chances of being injured in a car accident, drive below the posted speed limit and make sure your vehicle is properly maintained before leaving on a holiday road trip. Replace worn tires, change your windshield wipers, check to see if your headlights are working, and equip your tires with chains if you plan on traveling through a particularly snowy area.
- Be careful on ladders: One of the greatest causes of injury during the holidays is people falling off ladders or roofs while putting up decorations. Only use sturdy ladders with a proper safety rating, ask for assistance, and never stand on the very top of a ladder.
- Exercise caution with turkey fryers: Turkey fryers are consistently one of the greatest causes of house fires and severe burn injuries on an annual basis. If you plan on frying your turkey, be sure to carefully follow all instructions and fry your turkey in an area away from flammable materials, preferably outdoors. Make sure your turkey is completely thawed and dried before frying, do not overfill your fryer, and always keep a fire extinguisher nearby in case of an emergency.
- Shop for safe toys: During your holiday shopping, it is imperative you keep safety in mind when purchasing gifts for your little ones. While seemingly harmless at first glance, many toys on the market can potentially be hazardous to children, resulting in choking, strangulation, or other serious injuries. Organizations such as World Against Toys Causing Harm, Inc. (WATCH) regularly put out an annual list of dangerous toys to avoid.
Unfortunately, nobody can ever prepare for the unexpected. If you or a loved one are injured this holiday season by another party’s carelessness or as a result of a dangerous product – contact a personal injury lawyer from our team to schedule a free consultation. Backed by an A+ Rating from the BBB for our unparalleled legal knowledge and results – we have what it takes to help you pursue full and fair compensation for damages such as medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and more. Schedule your free consultation with an attorney today by calling (256) 539-4464 or completing a case evaluation form online.