Last updated: 05:00 PM ET, Mon May 18 2015

Study Urges Caution During Memorial Day Travel

Impacting Travel | Donald Wood | May 18, 2015

Study Urges Caution During Memorial Day Travel

Traveling for the Memorial Day holiday is very common, but recent analysis suggests there will be more deaths associated with driving during the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day in 2015 than the previous year.

According to Jon Hilkevitch of the Chicago Tribune, the National Safety Council estimates that more than 380 people in the United States will be killed in traffic accidents over the upcoming Memorial Day holiday weekend.

The climb in automobile deaths is a national problem that is up 11 percent from 2014. Through the first three months of this year, there have been 8,250 fatalities, according to the National Safety Council.

Fatalities aren’t the only negative trend, as car accidents that result in passengers needing medical attention for injuries reached almost one million cases through March 2015, a 26-percent increase from 2014.

Officials from the National Safety Council claim that the increase in driving deaths is a result of, “more vehicles on the roads, more total miles traveled and lower fuel prices,” according to Hilkevitch.

Earlier this month, AAA announced its estimate for travelers for the Memorial Day holiday, claiming that 37.2 million people will drive at least 50 miles for vacation between May 21 and May 25.

With an estimated 4.7 percent more travelers on the road this year, people must be extra careful.

The key for travelers hitting the open road this weekend will be to focus on the task at hand. Distracted driving is a major issue, with roughly 27 percent of all crashes last year being associated with the use of a cell phone, according to Hilkevitch.

Memorial Day weekend should be a time for family, friends and fun. So that we all get to the places we need to visit, please drive carefully.

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