Michigan Fatal Car Crashes Increase During Holiday Season

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Fatal Car Crashes Increase During Michigan’s Holiday Season

winter increase in fatal accidents

Key Points of This Article:

  • A recent analysis of National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration data found that fatal crashes increase by 29.8% during holidays in Michigan.
  • Nearly 40% of all fatal Michigan car crashes occur on Michigan highways and interstates including, I-96, I-75, and I-94, according to Michigan Traffic Crash Facts.  
  • Drivers must be extra careful traveling in winter and avoid speeding, minimize their distractions, prepare for weather events, and never drive after drinking alcohol or taking drugs.
  • A person can be found to be negligent in a civil proceeding for failing to obey traffic laws, thus exposing them to civil liability if their negligence results in injuries to another motorist or pedestrian.

Fatal Car Crashes Increase During Michigan’s Holiday Season

While summer days seem to be more heavily dominated with severe injury risks to American drivers, the winter months have proven to be more fatal. And now that most families are sticking close to home due to COVID-19, the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) is expecting more Americans to be traveling by car to destinations closer to home this winter. The increased road travel should raise concern to Michigan drivers as a new research study shows Michigan’s fatal accident profile is significantly higher this time of year than other areas of the country.

The analysis by CoPilot used data from the NHTSA over 15-years (2004 to 2018). The conclusion was made that increases in fatal vehicle crashes during holiday periods in Michigan rose by 29.8%. The rate of fatal car crashes increased by only 10% around Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years in nearby states.

Michigan findings:

  • Increase in fatal crashes on holidays: 29.8%
  • Average fatal crashes per day on holidays: 3.23
  • Average fatal crashes per day on non-holidays: 2.49
  • Share of all fatal crashes occurring on holidays: 6.3%

Sketchy weather and shorter daylight are among the more common contributors to fatal winter crashes in Michigan, and drunk or drugged driving become particularly prevalent during the New Year’s holiday with 42% of fatal crashes around the New Year involving an impaired driver. According to Michigan Traffic Crash Facts, about 40% of all fatal Michigan car crashes occur on Michigan highways and interstates, including I-96, I-75, and I-94.

Expect Congestion and High Traffic Near These Popular Winter Destinations in Michigan

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation has created a list of the more popular communities visited in Michigan during the winter. It includes:

  • Thompsonville
  • Frankenmuth
  • Metro Detroit
  • Traverse City
  • Muskegon
  • Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Glen Arbor
  • Boyne Falls
  • Saginaw
  • Sault St. Marie
  • Grand Rapids
  • Saint Ignace
  • Mackinac Island
  • Munising
  • Holland
  • Paradise
  • Marquette

Greater Detroit area communities like Warren, Sterling Heights, Dearborn Heights, Troy, Wayne, Farmington, and Southfield also see significant increases in holiday road traffic from both local travelers and out-of-state visitors.

If you plan a winter drive or travel to one of these destinations by car this season, please remember the added risk and operate your vehicle safely. Drivers must especially consider winter weather conditions and stay responsible by buckling up, slowing down, avoiding distractions, and never driving while impaired.

Stay safe!

Ask For Help From a Michigan Winter Car Accident Injury Attorney

If you or someone you know has been injured in a Michigan traffic crash this winter, call the Michigan car accident lawyers at the Lee Steinberg Law Firm, P.C. Our Michigan wintertime accident attorneys are ready to assist and answer your questions. We never charge a penny until we win, and we have helped thousands of clients obtain compensation and the justice they deserve. Call us at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733) for your free legal consultation.

Also read: Michigan Car Accident Lawyers – Winter Driving and Special Dangers