Thanksgiving 2017: 5 Tips For Holiday Travel

According to AAA, this Thanksgiving holiday is expected to be a busy one. Experts predict that an estimated 50.9 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more for Thanksgiving gatherings, the most since 2005. That’s an increase of 3.2 percent over last year.

AAA says that Seattle is the seventh-worst city in the country for travel delays for Thanksgiving. The worst time for travel is Tuesday, Nov. 14 from 3:45-5:30 p.m. Drivers during those hours will face trips that can take three times as long as during non-rush hour. AAA also identified the top traffic “hotspots” across the country, and Seattle’s I-405 at WA-167 comes in at No. 10. 

With so many drivers expected to be on the roads for the Thanksgiving holiday, here are some tips for when the traffic gets heavy.

Reduce Your Speed

It’s best to just accept the fact that you’re not going to beat the traffic ahead. As you approach traffic, slow down and stay in your lane. Attempting to move into what appears to be a faster lane is a common cause of accidents, and in the long run isn’t worth it at all. 

Be patient and keep an eye out for others who may not be paying attention.

Keep Calm

If you’re in a hurry and traffic slows, it can be easy to become enraged and begin to drive aggressively. This is the absolute worst way to drive, as you’re a danger not only to yourself but every other driver on the road.

Congestion is frustrating, but there’s no avoiding it. Remember that everyone has somewhere to go, and that your destination is not the only thing in the world. Aggressive drivers make poor decisions and focus on the wrong things, increasing the risk of accident. 

Take a deep breath, relax, and stay focused on the road.

Maintain A Safe Following Distance

If traffic slows unexpectedly, you’ll want to have given yourself enough room to stop safely. If you’re traveling too fast and must brake suddenly, having that extra space could be a lifesaver. 

It’s also a good idea to keep an eye on how much distance you have behind you in case of sudden braking.

Brake Gently

This goes with maintaining a safe following distance. By braking gently, you keep yourself and others safe. Smashing the brake can cause your car to skid into the car in front, while simultaneously catching the driver behind you by surprise. 

Use Your Turn Signal

While you should always use your turn signals while driving, it’s extremely important when driving in heavy traffic. Use them for all lane changes and turns, and be sure to check your blind spots. Recklessly changing lanes while in bumper-to-bumper traffic often results in accidents, but using your turn signal can minimize the dangers.

If you were in an accident that another driver caused, do not hesitate to contact Washington State accident attorney Chris Davis and the legal team at Davis Law Group, P.S., for advice. Davis Law Group can provide insight on your situation and determine if you may have valid grounds for a claim. To schedule a free case evaluation, call (206) 727-4000, use the chat feature below or fill out the contact form below.

Chris Davis
Award-winning personal injury attorney and founder of Davis Law Group, P.S. in Seattle, Washington.
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