busy christmasWhile caught up in the excitement of traveling during the holidays – even if it just around town – many people don’t realize that they are at an increased risk of being in an accident. Sadly, holidays are a time of not only increased traffic on Utah roads and highways, but also a greater number of impaired, distracted, impatient, or aggressive drivers; all of which lead to an increase in fatalities.

The Utah Department of Public Safety Highway Safety Office maintains statistics concerning holiday fatalities on Utah roads. Historically, some holidays are deadlier than others, and the statistics might surprise you. Utah law enforcement officers also step up their surveillance on big holidays and weekends, as they look for drowsy, drunk, or distracted drivers. These drivers are especially at risk for causing an accident, and you should be alert for them too.

Eight Deadliest Holidays in Utah

If you are out on the roads during one of these holidays, pay extra attention to the road and other drivers because these are the most dangerous holidays in Utah. Overall, the death rate per day for holidays is 1.2, compared to 0.8 for a regular day. Data below was collected over a 10 year period (1997-2006)1.

  1. Pioneer Day July 24th (1.6 deaths per day)
  2. Independence Day July 4th (1.5 deaths per day)
  3. Memorial Day (1.3 deaths per day)
  4. Thanksgiving (1.2 deaths per day)
  5. Labor Day (1.1 deaths per day)
  6. Halloween (1.1 deaths per day)
  7. Christmas (1.0 deaths per day)
  8. New Years (.06 deaths per day)

Warm weather means road danger

In addition to holidays, summer months in Utah can also be deadly. The months from July to October are historically deadlier for motor vehicle travelers than other months of the year. Consider these statistics1:

  • Nearly half (42.5%) of all traffic deaths occurred from July to October
  • In the last 10 years, July had the highest total number of motor vehicle crash deaths (382) while March (198) and February (199) had the fewest
  • In 2006, August (33) and October (33) had the highest number of deaths while May (14) had the fewest

If you need help after a serious car or truck accident, please contact the lawyers at the Christensen Law Firm.

1Data from Utah Department of Public Safety Highway Safety Office. Utah Crash Summary 2006. Salt Lake City, UT: Utah Department of Public Safety, 2008

photo courtesy of wikipedia