CINCINNATI, Oh. (December 23, 2019)--- As millions of travelers prepare to celebrate the year-end holiday season, AAA wants to make sure that safe driving is at the top of your ‘to do' list to ensure an enjoyable and trouble-free journey to the homes of those you love the most.
“The travel season is in full swing with many eager to spend the holidays with friends and family,” said Jenifer Moore, AAA spokeswoman. “No matter how you are traveling over the next few days, it is important to remember safety first and be prepared in the event of a breakdown or delay.”
In the spirit of the season, AAA is sharing one more important list of tasks to check off whether you’re traveling out of town or around town over the holidays:
- Buckle Up, Every Trip, Every Time – The use of a seat belt is the most important safety precaution that can be taken while traveling. During the 2019 Thanksgiving travel holiday, the Ohio State Highway Patrol issued more than 1,000 safety belt violations. Ohio law requires every driver and front seat passenger to wear a seat belt. Ensure that the lap belt and shoulder belt are secured across the pelvis and rib cage, which are better able to withstand crash forces than other parts of the body.
- Don’t Drive Intexticated – Distracted driving kills an average of nine people and injuries 1,000 each day according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Additionally, it is the third leading driver-related cause of crash fatalities behind speeding and driving under the influence. These numbers likely underestimate the problem because most drivers do not admit to distracting cell phone use after a crash. During the 2019 Thanksgiving travel holiday, the Ohio State Highway Patrol issued nearly 90 distracted driving violations. AAA encourages all drivers to put any and all mobile devices away while behind the wheel of a car. If using a navigation system, program the destination before driving or ask a passenger to help with navigation.
- Slow Down, Move Over – Slow Down, Move Over laws, active in all 50 states, are designed to save the lives of our police officers, emergency response workers, tow truck operators, and with the expanded law in Ohio, public service workers, by providing an extra barrier of safety for them as they work along the side of the road. An average of 23 tow operators are killed at the roadside every year, with one service provider on average being killed on the job at the roadside every other week. AAA urges drivers to slow down and move over or change lanes, if possible, to give safe clearance to those working roadside.
- Don’t Drive Intoxicated – Don’t make the holiday season deadly on our roadways by driving while impaired. December has been designated National Impaired Driving Prevention Month, to help bring attention to the dangers of not only drunk driving but drugged driving as well, which has become a growing risk on our nation’s roadways. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drunk-driving related deaths have fallen, but they still total more than 10,000 lives per year. Drivers need to remember that alcohol and illicit drugs as well as prescription and over-the-counter medications could impair their ability to drive safely. Always plan ahead to designate a non-drinking driver before any party or celebration begins. Never get behind the wheel of a car when you have been drinking alcohol – even after just one drink. Remember: If you Feel Different, You Drive Different.
- Check Your AAA Membership: Before you need help is the best time to check that you actually have service. Make sure your membership is up to date and the selected service level matches your lifestyle needs. AAA has varying levels of memberships to fit every budget and lifestyle. Members and non-members can take advantage of special new, renewal and gift membership offers with the code SAFETY until December 31, 2019.
AAA provides automotive, travel and insurance services to 60 million members nationwide and nearly two and a half million members in Ohio. AAA advocates for the safety and mobility of its members and has been committed to outstanding road service for more than 100 years. The not-for-profit, fully tax-paying member organization works on behalf of motorists, who can now map a route, find local gas prices, discover discounts, book a hotel and track their roadside assistance service with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. For more information, visit www.AAA.com.