Paving the road to safe Thanksgiving travels

If you have ever travelled for Thanksgiving then you know it is one of the busiest times of year to travel. Unfortunately more people travelling mean your odds for a car accident increases.

Progressive pulled past years’ claims data from the week of Thanksgiving, dating back to 2010 and gained insight on the top types of claims and the safest time to travel home after the holiday.

Black Wednesday1 accidents increased by 25 percent

  • The biggest jumps took place in Texas (40%), Ohio (32%) and New York (29%)
  • Nearly six in 10 single vehicle accidents (58.5%) on Black Wednesday involved striking an animal or object

Driving Tip: If you go out on Black Wednesday, be sure to get a designated driver.

Thanksgiving night2 accidents increased by 20 percent

  • 35 percent of accident claims involved only one vehicle
  • A large chunk of the accidents (31%) were backing or parking-related, perhaps indicating that shoppers were getting a head start on the midnight Black Friday sales

Driving Tip: With the large jump in animal and objects struck in the road, try to keep a closer eye than usual on the street in front of you.

Black Friday3 accidents increased by 34 percent

  • The trend from Thanksgiving night continued, with the data showing that 31 percent of claims on Black Friday were backing or parking-related, more than any other claim type filed on that day

Driving tip: Avoid spaces beside cars parked at an angle. Park farther from store entrances, where it’s generally less crowded, to prevent dings and scratches from car doors or shopping carts.

The Sunday after Thanksgiving has the highest percentage of out-of-state accidents of any day in the holiday week

  • Out-of-state accidents are most likely to occur in the states of New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, California and North Carolina.
  • Drivers from Florida, Georgia, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas are most likely to file out-of-state accident claims.

Driving Tip: Monday is the safest time to head home after the holidays with 37 percent fewer accidents compared to the popular travel day of the Sunday following Thanksgiving. Even Saturday is a safer time to travel, with 17 percent fewer accidents compared to Sunday.

Progressive wishes you a happy and safe Thanksgiving!

1Black Wednesday is defined as the time period of 8 p.m. the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, to 3 a.m. Thanksgiving morning
2Thanksgiving Night is defined as the time period of 8 p.m. Thanksgiving, to 3 a.m. the next Friday morning
3Black Friday is defined as the entire calendar of the Friday after Thanksgiving, 12 a.m. to 11:59 p.m.