Staying safe in Philly while traveling for Thanksgiving

Philadelphia skyline

Along with the holiday season comes peak travel, and traffic accidents spike during Thanksgiving, according to statistics.

“Thanksgiving continues to be one of the most dangerous weekends for motorists,” PennDOT Secretary Barry J. Schoch said in a statement announcing “Operation Safe Holiday.”

State and local police will coordinate roving patrols and sobriety checkpoints on Wednesday, Nov. 27, to curb unsafe and drunk driving before the holiday, as well as from Dec. 1 through New Year’s Day.

“This is one of the most dangerous times,” said Carol Ronis, communications manager for Mothers Against Drunk Driving. “It’s a busy time, people are on the road, people travel for Thanksgiving.”

“What we ask is that people think ahead, and have a Plan B, and have a designated non-drinking driver,” she said.

PennDOT is also running a statewide “Click It or Ticket” seat belt enforcement operation from Nov. 22 to Dec. 1.

Additionally, the Philadelphia International Airport is expecting 100,000 travelers passing through on the day before Thanksgiving.

Travelers are urged to allot ample time for arriving before their flight and consider checking in online before their flight. The SEPTA Airport Line travels from Center City to the airport every half hour and costs $8.

Stats:

2012 holidays (Pa.):

4,328 crashes, 53 deaths over Thanksgiving period

1,640 crashes, 19 deaths over Christmas and New Year’s

861 crashes, 31 deaths with a driver impaired by drugs or alcohol

758 crashes, 36 deaths with unbuckled occupants

-PennDOT

2011 holidays (U.S.)

931 deaths in drunk driving crashes. – National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

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