2. Tips to Get Through the Holidays Safely
3. Click It or Ticket
4. Thanksgiving Memory
5. 2022 Thanksgiving Impaired Driving Prevention
6. Rain, Rain, Here to Stay?
7. Alternative Travel Options During Winter
1. You must choose your role before drinking begins:
Will you drink or will you drive?
Remember, even if you had just one drink and you think you are "okay to drive," you could still be driving impaired.
2. How to ensure you get to follow through with your holiday plans.
1. Don’t drink and drive.
If there will be drinking at your holiday get-together, choose a designated driver who will remain alcohol free.
2. Make sure the car is ready.
Be sure your vehicle is properly maintained, in good shape for travel, and ready for winter driving conditions.
3. Map your route out ahead of time when possible.
Have a plan and be aware of projected weather conditions.
4. Buckle up!
Ensure you and your passengers are properly restrained in seat belts and car safety seats.
6. Avoid fatigue.
Get a good night’s sleep the night before, take regular breaks, and share the driving if possible. If you are tired, pull off the road to a rest area.
7. Have an emergency plan.
Have a cell phone and charger with you so it can be used in case of an emergency. Keep the contact information for emergency roadside assistance handy.
8. Do not text while driving and minimize cell phone use in order to keep your full attention on the road.
Use a hands-free device if you need to use your cell phone. See our prior blog posts for details about cell phone and texting while driving laws in Washington State.
9. Keep a safe following distance, allowing for ample time to react to the traffic around you.
If someone is tailgating you, allow them to pass. Don’t try to compete with impatient and aggressive drivers.
10. Watch your speed.
Drive to the conditions and don’t drive over the speed limit. Give yourself plenty of time to get to where you are going so you are not in a rush.
11. Remain calm.
If you feel stressed or irritable, take some deep breaths and stay calm. Don’t drive with road rage – this compromises the safety of yourself and the people around you.
3. Click It or Ticket
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration today announced the launch of the annual Click It or Ticket national seat belt enforcement mobilization with the goal of reminding drivers that seat belts save lives.
“As we continue to see an increase in traffic deaths across the country, risky driving behaviors, like failing to wear a seat belt, continue to be a contributing factor,” said Dr. Steven Cliff, NHTSA Deputy Administrator. “This campaign is designed to remind drivers that a seat belt is truly your best defense in a crash. Click It or Ticket isn’t about citations; it’s about saving lives.”
A $10 million paid media campaign will run May 16 through June 5, 2022, featuring radio, TV, and digital ads in both English and Spanish.
The public awareness campaign will coincide with special enforcement efforts May 23-June 5, during which state and local law enforcement agencies across the country will be issuing tickets to drivers who choose not to buckle up.
The work of our nation’s law enforcement officers plays an important role in preventing and reducing traffic-related fatalities.
NHTSA is committed to promoting equity in enforcement and impartial treatment of all people because the public must feel safe from harm on the road. Knowing that the law will treat them fairly is essential to this goal.
The paid media campaign will target drivers who, according to research data, are less likely to wear seat belts. In 2020, more than half of all young adults ages 18 to 34 killed in crashes were completely unrestrained.
Men make up the majority of those killed in crashes, representing 67% of all passenger vehicle occupant deaths in 2020.
Data show 55% of men killed in crashes were unrestrained, compared to 43% of women killed in crashes.
This year’s enforcement mobilization will once again be kicked off, on May 23rd, by the Border-to-Border initiative, a one-day national seat belt awareness event with states participating nationwide.
4. Don’t have this be your
1. Plan Ahead
Before you start your trip, make sure your vehicle is in good shape for travel. This is especially important for winter driving conditions. Check the weather before heading out to ensure the roads are safe to drive on. And don’t forget a windshield scraper!
2. Stay Fresh And Alert
Make sure you’re well rested before a long drive. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports from 2017 show that 91,000 drowsy-driving-related crashes resulted in 50,000 injuries and 800 deaths. Get home safely this holiday season.
If possible, plan your trip with another person who can drive. This makes it possible to take regular breaks to avoid drowsy driving.
3. Mind Your Speed
Give yourself plenty of time and distance to react to the traffic around you. An Automotive Fleet Magazine article notes that for every one percent increase in speed, a driver’s chance of an accident increases by two percent, the chance of serious injury increases by three percent, and the chance of a fatality increases by about four percent.
4. Drive Defensively
Increased holiday traffic and winter road conditions can be frustrating. Put the safety of everyone in your car first by letting impatient and aggressive drivers pass you or go through the intersection ahead of you so that you control the situation.
5. Don’t Drive Impaired
If you plan to drink, don’t plan to drive. NHTSA’s “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign has set out to end drunk driving through cutting-edge technology. Using a designated driver when you have a couple of holiday refreshments is always the safest choice.
6. Avoid Distractions
According to Distraction.gov, sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for five seconds. At 55 mph, that’s enough time to travel the distance of an entire football field. Driving requires your full attention. When you’re able to do so safely, pull off to the side of the road or find the nearest rest stop when you must use your cell phone.
5. 2022 Thanksgiving
Impaired Driving Prevention
November 23 - 27
Thanksgiving is just around the corner.
As we prepare for festivities with family and friends, we want to remind all drivers the dangers of impaired driving.
Consequences - 51% of Passenger Vehicle Occupants Who were Killed in 2020 Were Unrestrained
Of the 23,824 passenger vehicle occupants killed in 2020, 51% were not wearing seat Belts — a 4% increase from 2019.
Seat belts saved an estimated 14,955 lives and could have saved an additional 2,549 people if they had been wearing seat belts, in 2017 alone.
The consequences of not wearing, or improperly wearing, a seat belt are clear:
Traffic Safety Facts for Seat Belt Use
1. Buckling up helps keep you safe and secure inside your vehicle, whereas not buckling up can result in being totally ejected from the vehicle in a crash, which is almost always deadly.
2. Air bags are not enough to protect you; in fact, the force of an air bag can seriously injure or even kill you if you’re not buckled up.
3. Improperly wearing a seat belt, such as putting the strap below your arm, puts you and your children at risk in a crash.
The Benefits of Buckling Up are Equally Clear
● If you buckle up in the front seat of a passenger car, you can reduce your risk of:
1. Fatal injury by 45% (kahane, 2015)
2. Moderate to critical injury by 50%
● If you buckle up in a light truck, you can reduce your risk of:
1. Fatal injury by 60% (kahane, 2015)
2. Moderate to critical injury by 65% (NHTSA, 1984)
6. Rain, Rain, Here to Stay?
The holiday season brings a number challenges that make safe driving difficult.
During this time of year, there can be difficult weather conditions, limited daylight, and drivers in unfamiliar areas.
Here are six ways you can drive safely and smartly this holiday season.
Rain can create dangerous driving conditions including reduced visibility, reduced traction between tires and the road, and less predictable car handling. When it’s raining, be cautious and give yourself more time to get where you are going. Also remember to:
● Slow down, especially through high water. Driving through several inches of water at high speed can cause you to lose control of the car.
● Watch for hydroplaning conditions. If you hydroplane, ease off the gas, gently apply the brakes and steer straight ahead.
● Keep your distance. If it hasn’t rained in a while, road surfaces will be slick.
● Turn on your headlights to improve visibility.
● Disengage your cruise control.
Maintain your Vehicle
● Before heading out in wet weather, check your wipers for signs of damage. Replace wiper blades regularly.
● Make sure your defroster is functioning properly, especially if you haven’t used it in a while.
● Check your brakes. After driving through a puddle, check that brakes are working properly by tapping them gently a few times.
● Make sure tires are in good condition and are at the recommended inflation level. Tires should have a recommended 2/32 of an inch tread depth at any two adjacent grooves. Driving on over-inflated or under-inflated tires reduces traction and control on wet pavement.
7. Hesitant to Hit the Highway? Try Some Alternative Travel Options During Winter
Oregonians have options when it comes to travel. We have bus service in all the major metropolitan areas, and even in some of our smaller communities.
Throughout the state, regional bus services offer connections. Here are some options:
● Plan your trip using Get There Oregon. You can enter your starting and ending locations and select the transit option to find information on routes.
● On Get There Oregon, use the Ride Board feature to find a one-time shared ride.
Amtrak Cascades train and Cascades POINT bus offer service from Eugene to Portland to Seattle to Vancouver, B.C.
● POINT intercity bus service makes connections all over the state.
● To get the latest tips for safety, including COVID-19 efforts, visit our Public Transportation Division website.