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Tips to avoid crashing this Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is one of America's favorite holidays, and it's a time when families get together to visit and enjoy each other's company. Thanksgiving does have its own risks, though, particularly when you travel. With so many people heading to loved ones' homes, it's maybe not a surprise that there are accidents that occur that then lead to hours upon hours of legal documentation and claims.

According to the American Automobile Association, 90 percent of travelers will get to their destinations on Thanksgiving by car. That rush of traffic is nothing short of amazing, but it does come with its own set of concerns.

People heading out onto unfamiliar roads, driving late at night or simply rushing to get where they're going can lead to accidents. What can you do to help prevent them? Take a few steps to prepare your car and self for the ride.

Slow down, to start with. Speeding is an action that puts you and others at risk. For example, if you are driving safely but have to slam on your brakes to avoid a crash ahead of you, a driver who is speeding behind you might not have time to stop and could pull you into a crash of your own. Don't drive distracted, either; if you can space yourself from the vehicles in front of you, you'll have the time you need to slow or stop in an emergency.

Keep your headlights on at night to make yourself more obvious, and if you do have car trouble, pull over to the side of the road as far as possible to prevent accidents. Your family will be safer this way, and others will also be less likely to collide with your immobile vehicle.

Source: Safe Auto, "Thanksgiving Driving Statistics | Thanksgiving Traffic Accidents," accessed Nov. 21, 2016

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