Report: More Than 660 People Likely to Die on U.S. Roadways During Holidays

Another 76,000 likely to be injured during Christmas time and New Years, says the National Safety Council.

For the millions of Americans getting on the road in coming days, the National Safety Council has some grim statistics to keep in mind; more than 660 fatalities are projected during holiday travel.

The NSC estimates 308 people may be killed and 35,400 injured in car crashes during the Christmas holiday period which starts at 6:00 pm on Friday, December 22, and ends at 11:59 pm on Monday, December 25.

For the past five years, the actual fatalities were in range with the council’s estimates. In 2016, for instance, the NSC estimated 314 deaths, based on a range of 274 to 358; in reality, 307 died. Similar results were reported in previous years.

For 2017, the council projects 356 Americans will die and another 40,900 will be injured during the New Year’s holiday period, which begins at 6:00 pm on Friday, December 29, and ends at 11:59 pm on Monday, January 1, 2018.

“Buckling up, paying attention, slowing down and driving sober can ensure you and your fellow travelers make it home for the holidays,” NSC President and CEO Deborah A.P. Hersman said in a statement.

Citing statistics that show more than 10,000 deaths a year are tied to impaired driving. The NSC urged states to take steps shown to curb the risk including sobriety checkpoints.

Beyond getting enough rest and driving sober, the NSC advises everyone in a vehicle to buckle up, saying seat belts could save 257 lives between each holiday period.