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Car accidents are more prevalent during the holiday season. In fact, accident statistics during the month of December show that 41 percent of all fatalities occurred on New Year’s while 38 percent occurred on Christmas. If you are traveling during this time, it is important to be aware of some risks and precautions before hitting the highway.

Distracted driving can involve several actions from kids climbing around the vehicle to texting while driving to adjusting the radio – anything that takes attention from the roadway. Take the few extra minutes to make sure everyone is situated before driving. One accidental bump or distraction can be the difference between avoiding an accident.

Avoid traveling when you’re too tired. And, be mindful of medications that may cause drowsiness.

When changing lanes, use precaution. Changing lanes too quickly, cutting in front of another vehicle or not using your signals may cause an accident.

Alcohol abuse is common during the holidays. Drive with care. And, if you are planning to have a few drinks during the holidays, plan ahead to arrange a designated driver. Alternatively, if you are hosting a holiday party, be on the lookout for anyone who is too drunk to drive home and don’t let them leave.

What Should I do After a Car Accident?

Most importantly stay at the scene.

Call 911 as soon as possible. Wait for an accident report to be completed by authorities.

If the accident occurs on a busy highway, stay inside the vehicle and wait for police and ambulance to arrive on the scene.

Exchange information with the other driver and witnesses if possible. Avoid verbal confrontations.

Call your insurance provider to report the crash. Find out what protocols you need to follow to get any injuries are vehicle damage fixed.

Seek medical attention if necessary. In many instances the onset of pain may not be immediate.

Talk to a lawyer if necessary and find out what your rights are. The sooner the better as there are strict laws in most states that only allow a specified amount of time to bring a claim.

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