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Summer Travel Season 2017

INTERNATIONAL V. DOMESTIC TRAVEL

The terror attacks in Britain come right at the beginning of the summer travel season and the height of the tourist season in Europe. The attacks may lead to even more restrictions and heightened security in airports, which could cause bigger delays on international flights. For example, the ban on laptops and computer pads from airport cabins on flights from seven African and Middle Eastern countries this past spring could be expanded to domestic flights and more countries. The specter of terrorism, the uncertainty surrounding future travel policies under the Trump administration, and the strong dollar could all lead to a slow-down in international travel this summer.

Domestically, U.S. airlines expect to carry 234 million passengers from June 1 through August 31, up from 225 million in 2016, according to the trade group Airlines for America. In order to accommodate the increase in people and the potential increase in security measures, the TSA has added 2,000 screeners since last summer, and has increased allowances for overtime and part-time help. The extra help will hopefully enable the TSA to avoid lengthy delays which caused tens of thousands of travelers last summer to miss their flights.

But with the average nationwide gasoline price at its lowest point since 2005, and the unemployment rate at its lowest point since 2001, people may decide that cheap gas and a good economy mean a fun road trip this summer. While road trips are and should be fun, they are often dangerous as well, especially when taken by those under a certain age. Even short trips relatively close to home are statistically more risky over the summer months.

THE 100 DEADLIEST DAYS

The time period between Memorial Day and Labor Day is known by people who track automobile accidents and road safety in general as the “100 deadliest days for teens.” The reason is that during the summer months, drinking and driving increases and unfortunately, so do crashes caused by driving under the influence. In 2010, 5.8% of teens ages 16-17 and 15.1% of under-age drinkers ages 18-20 reported driving under the influence. That same year, 3,115 teens ages 13-19 died in motor vehicle crashes.

The deadliest days of the year in terms of the highest number of motor vehicle accidents are during the summer months. July 4th is the deadliest day, and Labor Day is the second deadliest day. August is the deadliest month of the year.

THE “FATAL FOUR”

The leading cause of death for males under 34 is motor vehicle crashes. Known as the “Invincibles demographic” because they think (wrongly) that an accident will never happen to them, this group is the most likely to engage in the “Fatal Four:” (1) speeding; (2) driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs; (3) distracted driving—texting, talking on the phone, or grooming; and (4) failing to wear a seatbelt. These four activities lead to and/or greatly increase the likelihood of accidents and injuries.

THE TAKEAWAY

The point of these statistics is not to scare people into staying home all summer. It is to make them smarter travelers and especially smarter drivers. Staying sober, staying within the speed limit, and staying off the phone while driving will result in fewer accidents on road—for the Invincibles and for everyone else.

CONTACT YOUR ATTORNEY

If you or someone you love has a motor vehicle accident, contact Dave Thomas at The Thomas Law firm for a free evaluation of your legal rights.

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Thomas Law Firm
Located at 945 East Paces Ferry Road, Resurgens Plaza, GA 30326.

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