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Lack of seat belt use may increase Thanksgiving car accident deaths

The number of car accident fatalities often spikes during the Thanksgiving Holiday travel season. Many people will pack New Jersey roads this weekend but not everyone will make it to their final destination because of the number of serious accidents that will happen on New Jersey roads. Fortunately, many of the Thanksgiving personal injuries and car accident deaths can be prevented by buckling up according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

“There is no holiday more closely associated with the American family, or with American travel, than Thanksgiving,” a NHTSA official said. “But if you hit the highways unbelted, the faces you could be seeing this Holiday might belong to an emergency room physician or nurse instead of the faces of your family and friends.”

Those who fail to use seat belts are more likely to suffer catastrophic personal injuries by being ejected from a vehicle. NHTSA statistics indicate that over 300 people died nationwide during the Thanksgiving travel season in 2009. Approximately 115 fatalities occurred during the day and 187 people died at night. The rate of nighttime car accident deaths has many causes, but a large factor in the increase in nighttime deaths is the fact that people are less likely to wear seat belts at night. Approximately 54 percent of the 187 people who died in night crashes that year failed to wear seat belts.

This means that in order to ensure a safe Thanksgiving weekend, make sure that everyone is buckled up at all times when traveling on New Jersey roads.

Source: NHTSA, “Thanksgiving Weekend,” Nov. 20, 2011

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