5 Ways to Avoid Memorial Day Road Trip Accidents

Memorial Day weekend is synonymous with summer kickoff. It’s a time for backyard barbecues, spending time with loved ones, and often embarking on a much-needed road trip. But with increased traffic comes a higher risk of Memorial Day road trip car accidents.

Here at Patterson Legal Group, our car accident lawyers want you to enjoy a safe and happy Memorial Day. That’s why we’ve compiled this list of five essential tips to help you avoid becoming a statistic during your Memorial Day road trip:

1. Prepare Your Car for the Journey

Before hitting the open road, ensure your car is in top shape to handle the miles ahead.  Schedule a pre-trip inspection with a trusted mechanic. They’ll check crucial components like:

  • Tires: Look for proper inflation, tread wear, and any damage.
  • Fluids: Ensure engine oil, coolant, brake fluid, and windshield wiper fluid are at appropriate levels.
  • Brakes: Have your brakes inspected for wear and functionality.
  • Battery: A pre-trip check can identify a weak battery before you get stranded somewhere.
  • Lights: Verify all headlights, taillights, turn signals, and brake lights are working properly.
  • Wiper blades: Replace worn or damaged wiper blades to ensure optimal visibility in unpredictable weather conditions.

Related: Summer Car Prep Tips

2. Plan Your Route and Be Flexible

Planning your route in advance allows you to:

  • Identify potential trouble spots: Research areas known for heavy traffic, construction zones, or accidents.
  • Explore alternative routes: Consider less congested backroads if possible, especially during peak travel times.
  • Factor in rest stops: Plan regular breaks to avoid fatigue and maintain focus behind the wheel.

Remember, sometimes the best-laid plans go awry. Be prepared to adjust your route based on real-time traffic conditions or unexpected delays. Utilize GPS navigation apps that offer live traffic updates to help you make informed decisions.

3. Prioritize Safe Driving Habits

Defensive driving is paramount, especially during busy holiday weekends. Here are some key safe driving practices to adopt:

  • Buckle up everyone: This is the law and the single most effective way to prevent serious injury or death in an accident.
  • Obey all traffic laws: Speeding, tailgating, and ignoring traffic signals significantly increases your risk of an accident.
  • Put down the phone: Distracted driving is a major cause of accidents. Avoid texting, talking on the phone (unless hands-free), or using electronic devices while driving.

4. Fight Fatigue: Plan for Rest and Share the Driving

Drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving. Here’s how to combat fatigue on your road trip:

  • Get enough sleep before you go: A well-rested driver is a safer driver.
  • Take regular breaks: Every two to three hours, or more frequently if needed, pull over and stretch your legs, get some fresh air, and grab a refreshing drink.
  • Share the driving, if possible: Having another licensed driver take turns behind the wheel allows everyone a chance to rest and recharge.

5. Be Prepared for the Unexpected: Pack an Emergency Kit

Even with the best planning, unforeseen circumstances can arise. Here’s what to pack in your emergency kit:

  • Non-perishable food and bottled water: Enough to sustain everyone in your vehicle for at least 24 hours.
  • First-aid kit: Containing essential supplies to treat minor injuries.
  • Flashlight and extra batteries: For nighttime emergencies or breakdowns.

Had a Memorial Day Car Accident? Patterson Legal Group Can Help

Here at Patterson Legal Group, our team is passionate about keeping motorists safe on holidays and every other part of the year. Our team of experienced personal injury attorneys has a track record of success in fighting for maximum compensation in cases in Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. We’re here to be the dedicated legal advocates you need to get through this difficult time.

Get your free consultation today by giving us a call at (888) 687-2400 or filling out an encrypted contact form. You can also connect with our LiveChat representatives. We follow a “no win, no fee” promise, so you won’t pay anything unless and until we win. Reach out today for your free, no obligation consultation.

The information on this blog is for informational purposes only. It is not meant to serve as legal advice for an individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship nor does viewing this material constitute an attorney-client relationship.