AAA projects record travel for July 4th

Published: Jun. 30, 2021 at 6:26 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - AAA and the Alabama Department of Transportation say that the Fourth of July is the deadliest holiday for motorists traveling by vehicle.

“I mean, the Fourth of July, you are just feeling free. The liberation of the nice air and nice weather, and everyone just getting together,” one person said.

According to AAA, that is exactly how roughly 1.5 million Georgians will be celebrating the upcoming holiday after a year shut down because of the pandemic.

″We are expecting record number, in fact, the second-highest number of travelers since we have been forecasting travel for Independence Day,” said Garrett Townsend, AAA public affairs director.

And with a projected 40% bounce-back from 2020 pandemic levels, the number of people on the roadways means more than just traffic congestion.

”The Fourth of July is a holiday where we see some of the highest fatalities on Alabama roads. So, it is important that everyone have patience,” said Allison Green, Alabama Department of Transportation.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 449 fatal accidents happen over the Fourth of July weekend across the nation. At least 40% of drivers involved in those crashes are under the influence of alcohol.

If you’re hitting the roads, AAA says to focus on the task at hand - driving and staying aware.

“Most of the states have laws like not holding a smartphone or device and driving at the same time. So, make sure you are aware of that to keep yourself and other motorists safe as well,” said Townsend.

AAA says that the worst days to hit the roads will be Thursday and Friday before the Fourth of July Holiday. Further, the worst day to head back is in the middle of the day on July 5.

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