NSC Urges Drivers to Take Control of Their Safety This July 4

With 565 roadway deaths predicted this Independence Day holiday, NSC reminds drivers to be safe. The goal is always zero.

June 24, 2019

Itasca, IL – National Safety Council calculations estimate 565 people may be killed on the road during the upcoming Fourth of July holiday period, and an additional 64,500 may be seriously injured in crashes.

NSC urges motorists to be particularly vigilant about impaired drivers, and to designate sober drivers themselves. Analysis of the latest available data shows during the 2017 Independence Day period, 39% of fatalities involved an alcohol-impaired driver, the highest percentage among all the major holidays.

The four-day holiday period this year will begin at 6 p.m. ET Wednesday, July 3, and will end at 11:59 p.m. ET Sunday, July 7. It comes on the heels of National Safety Month, observed annually in June to help educate about preventable deaths such as motor vehicle crashes, which are the second leading cause of unintentional fatalities in the U.S.

“As we celebrate one of our country’s most cherished holidays, we have to keep safety in mind,” said Lorraine M. Martin, president and CEO of the National Safety Council. “Sober and attentive driving could be the difference between watching fireworks and watching ambulance lights.”

Drivers can take measures to protect themselves. Tips to ensure a safer holiday weekend include:

  • Drive defensively. Buckle up, designate a sober driver or arrange alternative transportation, get plenty of sleep to avoid fatigue, and drive attentively, avoiding distractions.
  • Recognize the dangers of drugged driving, including impairment from opioids. Visit nsc.org/rxpainkillers to understand the impact of the nation’s opioid crisis.
  • Stay engaged in teens’ driving habits. Visit DriveitHOME.org for resources.
  • Look before you lock a vehicle to ensure no child is left in the back seat. At least 11 kids have died in hot cars this year. Visit nsc.org/hotcars to take a free, 15-minute training on preventing pediatric vehicular heatstroke.
  • Learn about your vehicle’s safety systems and how to use them. Visit MyCarDoesWhat.org for information.
  • Fix recalls immediately. Before you hit the road, visit ChecktoProtect.org to ensure your vehicle does not have an open recall.

The Council wishes everyone a safe and joyful holiday, free from preventable injuries. Supplemental information about the NSC motor vehicle fatality estimates for the July 4 holiday period can be found here.

About the National Safety Council
The National Safety Council is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to eliminate preventable deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy. Founded in 1913 and chartered by Congress, NSC advances this mission by partnering with businesses, government agencies, elected officials and the public in areas where we can make the most impact.

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