Staying Safe This Memorial Day Weekend in New Jersey
It is always important to practice road safety on New Jersey’s roadways. An especially important time to stay alert and extra cautious on the road is Memorial Day weekend.
Memorial Day weekend is one of the busiest travel holidays of the year. And because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the long year of quarantines and lockdowns we’ve experienced, as well as the influx in vaccinations, many people will be hitting the road to connect with their loved ones, in many cases for the first time in a long time. Of course, when there is an increase in traffic, the risk of car accidents increases.
As you prepare to venture out to celebrate Memorial Day weekend and begin the summer travel this year, please take a moment to read the following tips for how to stay safe on our state’s thoroughfares. These reminders are simple, basic, and part of your original training and common sense, but implementing them could save a life.
Obey Traffic Laws!
Of course, this is a given, right? Yes; however, the majority of drivers, even though they know traffic laws and understand how important it is to follow them for the safety of themselves, their passengers, other motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians, commit minor traffic violations in a hurry or lack of carefulness, letting down their guard as they gain more experience on the road. Especially during a crowded time like Memorial Day weekend when alcohol is involved in the celebrations of many people in the United States (including those driving), strictly following traffic laws and not creating any margin of error is your best bet to keeping your loved ones safe on the roads. Defensive and patient driving is the way to go.
Wear your seatbelt!
It seems obvious, but wearing a seatbelt is an essential key to safety in the case of a severe automobile accident. Those who wear seatbelts are at a significantly lower risk of injury in an accident, no matter what position in the car they are in, driver, passenger, or back seat passenger.
Follow the Speed Limit!
The vast majority of auto accidents in the United States result from one car exceeding the speed limit and creating a situation in which control is lost or unable to stop in time to prevent the accident. Remember that speeding only shaves off the time it takes to arrive at your destination by minutes. Allow yourself plenty of time to travel, and consider that it is worth being late to your destination if you arrive safely.
Focus on the Road!
Passengers, music, and cell phones are all potential distractions that can set you up for a dangerous situation on the road. When headed out on a New Jersey road trip of any length, prepare well. Set yourself up with a playlist (keeping the volume turned down to a reasonable volume that allows you to hear external noises such as sirens). Get in touch with anyone who may be contacting you during your trip, and let them know that you’ll be on the road, and you’ll be in touch when you arrive. Then put your cell phone out of reach so that you are not tempted. Be responsible with passengers, and ask passengers to be responsible for themselves and the wellbeing of everyone on the trip. Keep distractions to a minimum, and ensure that your priority is to keep everyone safe on the road.
Stay Sober If You are Driving!
One of the leading causes of auto accidents during Memorial Day weekend is driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. This means that, as noted above, it is essential to drive defensively during the holiday weekend, as other drivers will not be in full integrity or safety. Take into consideration the risks associated with driving under the influence: in addition to risking your own life and safety and that of your passengers, you are risking the lives of other motorists and others on the road, and you could also be charged with a DUI, which carries steep fines and consequences, including jail time. Consider other options instead of taking to the road after drinking: select a designated driver, call a driving service such as Uber, or make plans to stay where you are instead of heading home.
To ensure that you navigate any traffic incident during Memorial Day weekend, contact our Linden traffic attorneys.
If you have been in an accident or have received a ticket, discuss your rights and the available avenues to effectively handle this serious situation by contacting Attorney Edward S. Cooper.
At our law office, we serve clients in Roselle Park, Elizabeth, Clark, Westfield, and throughout Union County, Essex County, and northern Middlesex County.