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Proven ways to avoid the fatal four -- because safety never takes a holiday

Safe Winter

Safe Winter

Fatigue, speed, seatbelts and alcohol are four common factors that cause motor vehicle accidents during the winter. When traveling the holidays, remember to stay well rested, maintain a safe speed for the conditions, wear your seatbelt and never drink and drive. (U.S. Air Force Illustration by Airman 1st Class Paul Francis/Released)

Fatigue, speed, seatbelts and alcohol are four common factors that cause motor vehicle accidents during the winter. When traveling the holidays, remember to stay well rested, maintain a safe speed for the conditions, wear your seatbelt and never drink and drive. (U.S. Air Force Illustration by Airman 1st Class Paul Francis/Released)

Putting together a winter safety kit for your car is essential to have in case of an emergency.  Some of the items in the kit should be a cell phone with a charger, blankets and warm clothes, flashlight with extra batteries, first aid kit and a sack of sand or cat litter.

Putting together a winter safety kit for your car is essential to have in case of an emergency. Some of the items in the kit should be a cell phone with a charger, blankets and warm clothes, flashlight with extra batteries, first aid kit and a sack of sand or cat litter.

It is a tragic and chilling fact: the U.S. military loses the equivalent of a battalion of troops each year - not in combat, but in automobile accidents. Only 69% of the adult U.S. population consistently use a seatbelt. Don’t become a statistic.  Wear your seatbelt and make sure everyone in your vehicle does too. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Chris Ruano)

It is a tragic and chilling fact: the U.S. military loses the equivalent of a battalion of troops each year - not in combat, but in automobile accidents. Only 69% of the adult U.S. population consistently use a seatbelt. Don’t become a statistic. Wear your seatbelt and make sure everyone in your vehicle does too. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Chris Ruano)

No drinking and driving symbol (©RF/NOVA)

No drinking and driving symbol (©RF/NOVA)

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has predicted Thanksgiving Day to
be the deadliest driving holiday and New Years Eve follows right behind it. “Safe driving is vitally important, especially during the holiday season.” said Chief Master Sgt. Calvin Williams, 45th Space Wing Command Chief.

AF File Image

Watch you speed, we are. (U.S. Air Force graphic by Gary Rogers)

Watch you speed, we are. (U.S. Air Force graphic by Gary Rogers)

NEW CASTLE, Delaware -- Do you know the "Fatal Four?"

They are: Fatigue -- Speed -- Seatbelts -- Alcohol.

Our Holiday Safety Campaign begins with you, your immediate family, and fellow co-workers in your work center.

However, safety never takes a holiday.

Here are proven ways to avoid the Fatal Four:

Holiday Driving:
  • Holidays mean traffic jams -- Expect them and leave a little early
  • Drive reasonable distances -- Take a break every two hours
  • If you feel tired, PULL OVER -- Coffee doesn't replace rest
  • Do most driving during daylight hours
Winter Driving:
  • If you don't have to drive, DON'T!
  • If you must drive, be defensive and smart
  • Know the road conditions before starting your trip
  • Leave early
  • SLOW DOWN!
  • Triple the normal distance between you and the vehicle ahead of you
  • Steer into the skid if you start to slide
  • Keep a safety kit in your car for emergencies
At all times:
  • Do not drink alcohol and drive
  • Obey the speed limit
  • Buckle up your seatbelt, and make sure your passengers do the same
Remember: Be Safe -- Be Smart -- Be Seen

Contact the 166th Airlift Wing Safety Office at 323-3520 for other safety tips.