At Work At Home On the Road

NSC estimates nearly 800 total fatalities from car crashes this Christmas and New Year’s holiday periods

Council provides tips to stay safe this busy holiday season

Itasca, IL, Dec. 15, 2014 – The National Safety Council released its traffic fatality estimates for the Christmas Day and New Year’s Day holiday periods. NSC estimates 366* deaths and another 39,200 injuries requiring medical attention may occur because of car crashes during the Christmas Day holiday period. An estimated 421^ deaths and 45,000 injuries requiring medical attention may occur during the New Year’s Day holiday period. Seat belts could save an estimated 134 lives during the Christmas Day holiday period and 154 lives during the New Year’s Day holiday period.

Evaluation of Recent Christmas Day Holiday Period Estimates
YearNumber of DaysEstimate90% Confidence IntervalActual
20084.25432371-500409
20093.25317253-388248
20103.25303233-384249
20113.25287220-365256
20124.25377320-441351

Evaluation of Recent New Year’s Day Holiday Period Estimates

YearNumber of DaysEstimate90% Confidence IntervalActual
20084.25498447-555407
20094.25445394-502458
20103.25301260-347286
20113.25308259-364304
20123.25297249-353348

"The holiday season is supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year," said Deborah A.P. Hersman, NSC president and CEO. "Sadly, we could be facing two especially deadly holiday periods, since each will include a long four-day weekend. Families should take extra precaution on our highways to avoid unnecessary tragedies."

NSC recommends the following tips to stay safe:

  • Buckle up every trip, every time – even when traveling short distances
  • Refrain from using electronic devices – including hands-free – behind the wheel
  • Secure children in size-appropriate restraints
  • Do not drink and drive, as impairment begins with the first drink – if you drink, designate a sober driver or take alternate transportation
  • Plan ahead and drive defensively, especially during bad weather
  • Never drive when you are tired – get plenty of sleep before your trip and plan regular stops

The Christmas Day holiday period begins at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 24 and ends at 11:59 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 28. The New Year’s Day holiday period begins at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 31 and ends at 11:59 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 4, 2015. Find more seasonal safety tips at nsc.org.

*Supplemental Christmas Day Holiday Traffic Fatality Estimate Detail
^Supplemental New Year’s Day Holiday Traffic Fatality Estimate Detail

About the National Safety Council

Founded in 1913 and chartered by Congress, the National Safety Council, nsc.org, is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to save lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy. NSC advances this mission by partnering with businesses, government agencies, elected officials and the public in areas where we can make the most impact – distracted driving, teen driving, workplace safety, prescription drug overdoses and Safe Communities.

Contact: Kathy Lane
NSC Communications Director
(630) 775-2307
kathy.lane@nsc.org

​Contact the Media Team

(630) 775-2307
media@nsc.org

National Safety Council Mission

The National Safety Council eliminates preventable deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy.

Sign Up for Newsletter

© National Safety Council. All rights reserved.