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KellyGram – Gee, the Traffic is Terrific!

 

 


We are in the prime of holiday festivities, and my calendar is filled with events to celebrate the season with friends, family, and colleagues across South Carolina. With my immediate family divided between Columbia and the Florence/Myrtle Beach area, I’ve been doing more traveling than usual—my poor car has driven over 6,000 miles in the last six weeks!! On the whole, when my destination promises time spent with my loved ones, I don’t mind hitting the road. However, as a personal injury lawyer, I am all too aware that, when it comes to driving, the most wonderful time of the year can also be the most dangerous time of the year due to an increase of drivers engaging in these behaviors:

  • Fatigued Driving: In addition to our usual responsibilities, the holidays bring more social engagements and household chores that keep us on the go and, often, unrested. But fatigued driving is dangerous—someone who is operating their car without having had sufficient sleep is three times more likely to be involved in a crash.
  • Impaired Driving: For some, the holiday spirit can inspire overindulgence on holiday spirits. On average, during the last two weeks of December, 40% of traffic fatalities stem from crashes involving alcohol-impaired drivers. So, especially during this time, stay mindful of your surroundings and know that you may very well be sharing the road with an impaired driver.
  • Distracted Driving: Whether it’s due to texting warm holiday wishes to friends, checking social media, or gazing at Christmas lights, statistics show that, during the winter holiday, distracted driving increases by one-third. So put away your smartphone and be on the lookout for inattentive travelers!

As I usually spend the week between Christmas and New Year’s in Myrtle Beach, working from the Mike Kelly Law Group office on the Grand Strand, I am witness to these driving don’ts on a grand scale. Myrtle Beach is no longer just a summertime resort—more and more people are bringing their families to the area for Christmas every year. The swell of tourism means that the road is filled with drivers who are not familiar with the roadways, who are looking at maps on their smartphones, and who may have had a few too many as sometimes happens in Myrtle Beach. So, although my cautionary advice may seem exaggerated to some, I understand firsthand the dangers of these driving behaviors and assure you that it is not.

With that said, no matter how far away you roam this holiday season, if you plan to be on the road, please exercise caution and stay attentive! Let’s make this holiday a safe and happy one!

Warmly,

 

Mike Kelly

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