Like any three day holiday weekend, traffic increases as drivers hit the road in search of fun and sun. While traffic-related deaths and injuries have been steadily decreasing over the past few years, this year's 4th of July holiday falls on a Saturday. Statistics report that weekend holidays tend to have more traffic, drinking/partying, and as a result, more crashes.
The National Safety Council estimates this year the 4th of July holiday will see as many as 409 traffic fatalities and 49,500 additional injuries. These figures, if accurate, will be the highest since 2008. The National Safety Council has provided several safety tips for motorists for the holiday weekend:
- Don’t drink and drive. It can be said a million times, but for some reason the false confidence that comes with drinking often allows motorists to forget about the deadly consequences of drinking and driving;
- As always, buckle up. The NSC reports that properly used seat belts will help save over 155 lives over the holiday;
- Placing children in proper child safety seats is also vital to help reduce the number of holiday injuries.
- Given the increased traffic, reducing overall driving speeds will provide an additional safety cushion for drivers;
- It is a fact that distracted driving is a major cause of unnecessary car accidents. Make sure to put down your phone while driving and stay free of all distractions;
Holiday Fireworks Increase Injuries Tremendously
The 4th of July is also the single biggest day of the year for firework use. While fireworks are essential for celebrating Independence Day, it must be remembered that fireworks are explosives. These explosives are responsible for everything from burn injuries to the loss of limbs and death. Extreme caution and additional safety measures are required to prevent unnecessary injuries over the holiday.
Fireworks often lure people into a false sense of safety. As a child, we are often given snaps and sparklers which seem all to harmless. This sense of safety is then applied to other types of fireworks which carry much more explosive capabilities. The Medical Daily reports that many injuries are occurring to younger and younger children, with about thirty percent of those actual lighting fireworks being under the age of 14. Some of the most common firework injuries are:
- Leg Injuries: Fireworks thrown near others often results in leg burns and blast injuries.
- Hearing Injuries: The loud concussion blast from fireworks is responsible for numerous hearing loss injuries.
- Burn Injuries: The explosion of fireworks results in a large number of burn injuries and scarring.
- Eye Injuries: The eyes are extremely vulnerable to explosion injuries. Our reflexes are often too slow to allow our eyelids to close before the blast occurs.
We all need to be constantly on guard to prevent unnecessary firework injuries.
Firework Liability and Homeowners Insurance
It should be remembered by those hosting parties that they have a duty to prevent negligence which occurs on their property. Allowing young children to run wild and unsupervised with dangerous explosives is extremely negligent. Property owners should also be extremely vigilant to ensure no underage drinking is allowed on their property at all times, especially if fireworks are also being used. To determine if homeowners insurance applies to your injury, contact an insurance lawyer for a free consultation.
Use caution and be safe this 4th of July!