DEARBORN, Mich., (August 26, 2019) — The Labor Day holiday weekend is one of the most traveled weekends during the summer – third behind Independence Day and Memorial Day. This year, as gas prices continue to drop, millions of motorists will hit the roads for the holiday weekend. As drivers set out on that last road trip of the summer, AAA is urging motorists to avoid speeding, distractions and impaired driving; additionally drivers and all passengers should be buckled up.
The majority of traffic crashes can be prevented. According to NHTSA data, in 2017 impaired driving, distracted driving and speeding accounted for just over half of all traffic fatalities. In addition, passengers failing to buckle up also led to fatalities.
“With greater numbers of drivers expected on the roadways, it’s crucial for motorists to make safe and responsible decisions when getting behind the wheel,” said Adrienne Woodland, spokeswoman, AAA – The Auto Club Group.
AAA Offers Tips for Safer Travel:
- Plan ahead. Make sure your vehicle has been properly serviced. If you are unfamiliar with how to get to your destination, program your navigation ahead of time, before you get on the road. Make sure the battery on your phone is completely charged and have a charger in case of an emergency. Have an emergency roadside kit in your vehicle.
- Leave early. AAA encourages drivers who have the flexibility, to travel during off-peak hours. Based on prior holiday trends, Friday afternoons are busy days to travel. Traffic is also expected to be heavy late Monday afternoon.
- Be patient. Follow the rules of the road as there will be more motorists on the roadways than usual, with many in unfamiliar areas. Get plenty of rest before setting out on a road trip and schedule breaks every two hours or 100 miles to remain alert and avoid driving drowsy.
- Eliminate distractions. Research shows that taking your eyes off the road for just two seconds doubles your chances of crashing. Avoid distractions like texting while driving or reading a text while driving. Also, be aware of the dangers of cognitive distraction while driving. Hands-free and in-vehicle technologies can mentally distract drivers, even if their eyes are on the road and their hands are on the wheel. Drivers should designate a passenger to serve as their official text messenger and navigator.
- Buckle up: Make sure all passengers are buckled up no matter the seat they occupy in the car. This simple action can save lives should you get into a crash.
“Take your time, plan ahead and be extra alert to make sure you and your passengers stay safe while out on the roads. If drivers follow these simple rules when it comes to traveling during the holiday weekend, we can reduce or even eliminate unnecessary crashes,” continues Woodland.
AAA Activates ‘Tow To Go’ Program
This weekend, AAA and Budweiser will activate its ‘Tow to Go’ program for the Labor Day holiday. AAA reminds motorists to take steps ahead of time to avoid driving impaired.
“There is no such thing as a responsible impaired driver,” said Adrienne Woodland, spokeswoman, AAA-The Auto Club Group. “Impaired driving fatalities can be prevented by planning ahead and choosing a sober ride home, such as a designated driver. Drivers who get behind the wheel while intoxicated risk both their life and the lives of other motorists on the road.”
Since its inception in 1998, Tow to Go has removed more than 25,000 impaired drivers from roads across the Southeast and Midwest. The service enables AAA and Budweiser to remind the public to plan ahead when celebrating with alcohol. The Tow to Go program is available Friday, August 30 and ends Tuesday, September 3 at 6 a.m.
Tow to Go Service Areas
Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, North Dakota, Nebraska, Tennessee, Wisconsin and Indiana (Fort Wayne and South Bend only)
(855) 2-TOW-2-GO or (855) 286-9246
About The Auto Club Group
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America. ACG and its affiliates provide membership, insurance, financial services and travel offerings to over 9.9 million members across eleven states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 59 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel, and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. Visit AAA on the Internet at AAA.com.