The holidays can make for perilous driving.

NSC Issues Christmas, New Year's Driving Fatality Estimates

Year-end holidays are a potential threat to the nation ending the year with a record low number of motor-vehicle fatalities. As travel increases at the holidays, so too does the incidence of high risk behaviors, like drunk driving.

The National Safety Council estimates there will be 432 motor-vehicle fatalities during the Christmas holiday period that began yesterday at 6 p.m. and extends until midnight, Dec. 28. For the New Year's holiday period, from 6 p.m. on Dec. 31 until midnight on Jan. 4, the NSC estimates 445 motor-vehicle fatalities.

Estimates coincide with a 2008 traffic fatality rate that, through October, has the United States on track to achieve its lowest annual rate of traffic deaths ever recorded and the first time the number of crash-related deaths has dipped below 40,000 since 1961, according to National Safety Council data. Factors that help keep people safer on the roads include improved safety features in vehicles and greater visibility and enforcement of important traffic safety laws, including those related to seat belts, child passengers, impaired driving and teen driving.

"There is an especially good reason to drive defensively this holiday season, as our nation is on the verge of making traffic safety history," said Janet Froetscher, president and CEO of the NSC. "Yet we know the holidays bring increased incidence of drunk driving and often other safety risks, such as those posed by winter weather or drowsy driving."

"The Council urges everyone on the road this holiday to wear a seat belt," Froetscher said. "Seat belts are the single best defense against drunk drivers and the most effective way to protect passengers and reduce fatalities in crashes. And please, if you plan to drink at a holiday party, don't drive. Alcohol impairment is a factor in 32 percent of all motor vehicle fatalities."

In addition to the human loss, motor-vehicle crashes present a significant national expenditure in lost wages and productivity, medical expenses, administrative expenses, employer costs and property damage. The estimated cost of motor-vehicle deaths, injuries, and property damage was $257.7 billion in 2007.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • Comply with OSHA’s Electronic Recordkeeping Requirements

    Collect relevant incident data and generate accurate OSHA 300, 300A, and 301 regulatory reports, including 300A CSV files for easy electronic submission to OSHA.

  • Complete Online Safety Training Courses

    Deliver state-of-the art, online safety training courses to your organization with IndustrySafe Training Management Software. Generate reports to track training compliance and automatically notify learners of upcoming or overdue classes.

  • Easy to Use Safety Inspection App

    Conduct inspections on the go with IndustrySafe’s mobile app. Complete safety audits at job sites and remote locations—with or without web access.

  • Track Key Safety Performance Indicators

    IndustrySafe’s Dashboard Module allows organizations to easily track safety KPIs and metrics. Gain increased visibility into your business’ operations and safety data.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus
Live From Safety