Drive Safely This Memorial Day Weekend

May 20, 2009
The National Safety Council (NSC) reminds drivers to buckle up and drive defensively this Memorial Day weekend.

While NSC estimates traffic fatalities during this year's holiday weekend decline compared to last year, drivers still must be vigilant in their safe driving habits during this high-traffic holiday weekend. From 6 p.m. Friday, May 22, through the end of Monday, May 25, NSC estimates there will be 366 traffic fatalities, down 23 percent from 2007. NSC also expects an additional 19,400 nonfatal disabling injuries.

Seat belt use is the most effective protection against serious crash injuries, reducing the risk of injury by 50 percent, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). NSC estimates that 324 lives will be saved this Memorial Day weekend because people wore seat belts, and an additional 85 lives could be saved if all people wore seat belts.

This month, NHTSA's "Click It or Ticket" May Mobilization launches the summer driving season, the most dangerous time of year for motor-vehicle crashes. NSC supports Click It or Ticket, the most successful seat belt enforcement campaign ever, which has created the highest national seat belt usage rate. Law enforcement will enact a zero-tolerance enforcement of seat belt laws coast-to-coast, day and night, throughout the remainder of May.

For tips on driving safely and defensively, visit NSC's online fact sheet library.

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