Thanksgiving Weekend Busiest for National Travel; GJEL Accident Attorneys Caution Motorists to Drive Safely

ORINDA, Calif. (Nov. 17, 2010) — Every Thanksgiving, law enforcement teams prepare for the busiest travel period of the year when families take to the roadways for an extended holiday. Along with higher numbers of vehicles and passengers come higher accidents and fatalities. GJEL Accident Attorneys, a catastrophic injury and wrongful death law firm in the San Francisco Bay area, is advising motorists to be alert as defensive drivers.

Nationwide, there were 389 fatalities during Thanksgiving weekend and thousands more injuries in 2008, according to the National Safety Commission.

That same year, California reported 35 vehicle deaths and more than 2,300 vehicle injuries over Thanksgiving weekend according to the California Highway Patrol. Of those, 15 deaths and 425 injuries were alcohol related.

“Thanksgiving weekend marks the time of year when everyone is finally able to take needed time off from work and travel with family either by auto or airplane,” said Andrew Gillin, managing partner of Gillin Jacobson Ellis & Larsen. “It’s more important than ever for motorists to be smart when driving on the nation’s roadways and follow basic safety guidelines.”

GJEL Accident Attorneys Safe-Driving Tips

– Download and keep the GJEL Accident Checklist in your vehicle’s glove box. When a collision occurs, many people panic and forget what information they need to gather on the scene.

  • In newer model vehicles, DVD screens are visible to drivers; push viewing to the back seat so no distractions occur while operating an automobile.
  • Wear seat belts at all times and adhere to the National Highway Traffic Safety program, Click-It-or Ticket. Safety belts keep all occupants safer in a vehicle, and help reduce fatalities. There are 31 states with primary seat-belt enforcement laws, meaning police can stop a vehicle and issue a citation for a safety belt offense only.
  • Do not text while driving. The number of distracted drivers on our roadways has soared and no motorist should text, dial or answer a mobile phone while operating a vehicle. Many states, including California, have total bans or limited bans around operating a mobile phone while driving. To learn more about national driving laws, GJEL Accident Attorneys developed a state-by-state infographic available on its news center.
  • Obey all speed limits. When you travel five miles over the speed limit on crowded roadways you will not arrive at your destination sooner; you only increase the possibility of a traffic accident.

About Gillin Jacobson Ellis & Larsen

GJEL Accident Attorneys is a San Francisco Bay Area law firm representing plaintiffs in catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases. Since 1972, Gillin Jacobson Ellis & Larsen has obtained recoveries in more than 99 percent of its cases.