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The Most Dangerous Holidays

Seth Harris

Last modified on December 5, 2023

The Most Dangerous Holidays

Traveling to see loved ones is common during holidays. In addition, many people may be traveling more often during the holiday season to shop, attend holiday events, and more. On top of that, many consume alcohol and stay out late to enjoy holiday parties.

These factors can increase the odds that motor vehicle collisions will occur. Other types of accidents may also be more common during the holidays, too. For example, slip-and-falls at crowded retail stores may occur more frequently during holiday shopping.

What are the most dangerous holidays in the U.S.? According to the National Safety Council (NSC), the most dangerous holiday periods are:

New Year’s Day

The NSC doesn’t consider a “holiday period” to consist of a single day. Per the NSC, a holiday period includes the time during which many may be traveling for or celebrating a holiday.

For example, New Year’s Day is on a Monday in 2024. The NSC states that the New Year’s Day holiday period will begin the Friday before.

Accordingly, the NSC predicts 375 people may lose their lives in traffic crashes on U.S. roads during the 2024 New Year’s Day holiday period. The NSC does not estimate how many people may survive such crashes but sustain major injuries.

Memorial Day

The NSC estimated approximately 469 individuals would die in motor vehicle wrecks during the 2023 Memorial Day holiday period. Traffic death rates may be higher during holiday periods in warm months as more people may be likely to travel in agreeable weather.

Research supports this notion. According to a National Library of Medicine study, motor vehicle crashes are more common on hot days.

Independence Day

Independence Day is another popular warm-weather holiday. For the 2023 Independence Day holiday period, the NSC estimated traffic crashes would claim 619 lives on U.S. roads. This makes it one of the deadliest United States holidays.

Labor Day

The NSC predicted 455 people would die in traffic accidents during the 2023 Labor Day holiday period. Using the NSC’s definition of a holiday period, the Labor Day holiday period always lasts 3.25 days. It begins the Friday evening before Labor Day and lasts through the holiday.

When you’re traveling during the holidays, remember that people may already be celebrating a holiday even if the actual day hasn’t arrived yet. Thus, intoxicated drivers leaving or heading to holiday celebrations may be on the road in greater numbers than usual.

Thanksgiving Day

Thanksgiving is a relatively long holiday period that always spans 4.25 days. The NSC estimated that 507 people would lose their lives in Thanksgiving accidents during the 2023 holiday period.

Christmas Day

The Most Dangerous Holidays

For the 2023 Christmas Day holiday period, the NSC predicts 345 traffic deaths. As the NSC also points out, many who travel during the holidays opt to do so by car.

Car travel has a higher fatality rate than many other forms of transportation. If you have the option to travel by train or plane during the holidays, consider doing so. Staying away from roads this time of year could minimize your chances of sustaining harm.

Other ways to avoid being hurt during the holiday season include:

  • Keep an eye out for hazardous conditions at crowded holiday events
  • Check weather reports before traveling
  • Wear footwear with a strong grip if snow or ice accumulates
  • Carefully read the safety instructions before using any products you receive as gifts
  • Carefully install holiday lighting and decor to guard against fires or other such accidents
  • Try not to drive between the hours of 10:00 PM and 3:00 AM, as accidents may be more likely to occur during these hours
  • Purchase shovels and other snow and ice removal equipment so you can respond promptly when snow storms strike
  • Make sure the outdoor lighting at your property is adequate

See a doctor right away if you’re involved in even a minor accident during the holidays. This is necessary regardless of whether you think you’ve been injured. You could sustain an injury without realizing it. If there’s any chance you’ve been hurt, err on the side of caution and seek medical care.

Contact an NYC Personal Injury Lawyer

Keeping the above safety tips in mind can reduce your chances of getting hurt during any holiday period. However, taking such steps doesn’t guarantee you’ll avoid harm.

Have you sustained injuries during the holidays due to the negligence of another party? You may be entitled to compensation. Because New York is a no-fault state, if you were hurt in a car wreck, you don’t even need to prove negligence to get money from your insurer for your medical expenses.

Negotiating with an insurance company may be the last thing on your mind at this moment. Now is the time to focus on your recovery. Our NYC personal injury lawyers at Harris, Keenan & Goldfarb can pursue compensation on your behalf. Learn more by contacting us online or calling us today at 800-PAIN-LAW for a free case review.

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Over $500 Million in Verdicts and Settlements

Our track record showcases over $500 million won for our clients. Each victory underlines our commitment to justice and client care. Explore our impact, case by case.



A Brooklyn jury awarded Mr. Vargas $17.5 million for the City of New York’s violation of his civil rights for failing to provide him medical care while in custody. The jury found that the police officers involved failed to provide the necessary medical treatment and awarded $17.5 million to Mr. Vargas.



Harris Keenan & Goldfarb partners Seth Harris and Sheri Holland obtained a $4,730,398.00 jury verdict on behalf of our client who tripped and fell at a private apartment building in the Bronx, suffering a broken foot that developed a very painful, permanent neurological condition called Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (“RSD”).



A Bronx jury awarded John Doe over $12 million for an accident on a construction site. John Doe was working when a piece of scaffold weighing 35 pounds fell, striking John Doe in the lower back. John Doe suffered a herniated disc requiring surgical removal of a portion of the disc and permanent nerve damage.



A Bronx jury awarded $10.5 million to the mother of Malcolm Ferguson, who was wrongfully shot and killed by the New York City Police Department. The police officer, Louis Rivera, also a defendant in the case, was found to have used excessive force in violation of Malcolm Ferguson’s civil rights as protected under the United States Constitution.



A Bronx jury awarded plaintiff William Cardoza $4 million for injuries caused by the use of excessive force during an arrest. During the arrest, Mr. Cardoza was pepper-sprayed and repeatedly hit with a police nightstick. As a result, Mr. Cardoza sustained injuries to his hand and finger.



The firm’s client, a 33-year-old teacher’s assistant, was scalded by an espresso machine that exploded while the defendant’s employee was demonstrating how the machine worked. The client was a customer at the defendant’s coffee shop on the date of the accident and suffered first-degree burns to her right (dominant) hand.



The firm represented the mother- decedent and her infant son. During the decedent’s admission to the defendant hospital, the defendant dispensed anesthesia during an epidural to the decedent in an inadequate manner. The mother-decedent suffered personal injuries and wrongful death due to the defendant’s failure to properly administer epidural anesthesia.



Mr.Brennan fell from approximately 25 feet while working on a construction project. He suffered a shattered bone in his right leg requiring surgery and hardware placement. Mr. Brennan also suffered two fractures in his facial bones, and a dislocated finger requiring surgical repair.



The firm’s client was a child with cerebral palsy who was injured as a result of medical malpractice. The firm’s clients claimed improper management of pregnancy, labor, and delivery resulting in brain damage, and received a Brooklyn personal injury settlement.



The firm’s client, a 63-year-old mentally incompetent man, slipped and fell in his own urine while attempting to walk to the bathroom at the defendant’s senior citizen home. The client fractured his hip and as a result is confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life. The client claimed that the staff of the home failed to properly care for him, and the jury awarded $1,677,835.



The firm’s client, a 47-year-old male, slipped and fell on a public sidewalk in the Bronx. It had snowed four to five days prior to the date of the accident, and the sidewalk was covered with ice. The client suffered a lumbar fracture and a herniated disc. The jury found the city liable and awarded the client a $2,995,000 personal injury settlement in the Bronx.



A Bronx jury awarded plaintiff Luis Molina $2.61 million for injuries sustained when he fell down a subway station stairway. Mr. Molina was caused to slip and fall as a result of a plastic bag that had blown onto the steps from a street opening. As a result of the fall, Mr. Molina suffered a herniated disc and a tear of his right shoulder’s rotator cuff. The jury found that the NYC Transit Authority was liable for the accident.



A Bronx jury awarded Ms. Colon $2.25 million for a trip and fall accident. Ms. Colon was caused to fall when she moved to the right to allow another pedestrian to pass, and her foot rolled to the outside due to the sidewalk being unlevel with the adjoining grass. The jury found the defendant liable and awarded Ms. Colon $2,253,714.00 for her pain and suffering.



A Brooklyn jury awarded Arvella Floyd $1.9 million for a fractured wrist which required multiple surgeries, including an open-reduction internal fixation and a carpal tunnel release. Ms. Floyd was injured when the hot water knob of the shower fell off after numerous complaints to the superintendent, and scalding water spewed toward her, causing her to
fall and break her wrist.



A Bronx jury awarded plaintiff Juanita Young $1,350,000 for injuries caused by the use of excessive force during an arrest. During the arrest, Ms. Young, who is legally blind, was handcuffed from behind, with her children watching, and taken to the top of the stairs to exit the building. The officer proceeded to push her down the stairs multiple times.

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00:47 22 Jun 24
I contacted Burns and Harris, this company which is renamed now, about two years ago about my injury. I even had an in person meeting with Stephen LaRocca.I had to chase him for a year just to sign something, in the end I just gave up. Pretty appalling company and even worse than people have written. I can only imagine the people who haven’t taken the time to write your review. Don’t bother with them.
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My experience with Harris Keenan and Goldfarb was wonderful. My legal representative, Steven LaRocca with Samantha Walton always made me feel well defended and cared for, in a way that went beyond professional representation and into the realm of caring about me on a personal level. Steven, Samantha and Seth Harris got me a great outcome and I can’t thank them enough!
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Horrible people. I lost complete confidence in this firm. Attorneys dragged their feet for 4 years and my mom died before a settlement could be reached. I advised them several times that my mom was sick to put fire under their feet but the effort was to no avail.
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I am completely satisfied, and recommend Harris Keenan & Goldfarb as Attorneys to represent anyone. Their care for me physically, and overall helped me stay strong in spite of my injuries. Always available to answer questions, and inform.They got me Justice, and achieved a substantial outcome for my case.I am very impressed, and thankful for their outstanding performance on my behalf.I am very pleased, and significantly satisfied with their representation.‐-Sherylon Wilkins
Robert LennonRobert Lennon
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Gene Matos (fanboye)Gene Matos (fanboye)
18:48 15 Jan 24
I first crossed paths with Seth Harris when serving jury duty many years ago. He was so professional and personable, that when my mom was seeking legal counsel for medical malpractice, I told her she had to reach out to his firm. We had meetings with a few different firms, but Harris Keenan & Goldfarb was the only firm that did not try to get us to sign paperwork before even meeting. They took the time to listen and understand our situation before we signed anything, and they were transparent and responsive the whole time. I would like to give special thanks to Samantha Walton, Marla Stein, Val Wallace and Seth Harris for helping my mom through this tough time. They were honest and upfront, and even though Seth Harris wasn't personally on the case, he took the time to meet with us and give us his thoughts on it.
Solange IsaacSolange Isaac
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I am pleased with the services provided by Ms Sheri on my case. The team at Harris, Keenan, & Goldfarb were very nice and explained everything to me. Everything that I had questions on they answered without frustration and were prompt and knowledgeable.6 years ago I had a slip and fall accident at my employers place of business. I reached out to them because I knew that I was being wrongfully treated. They took care of the case, restored my self confidence, and brought so much peace to my problem riddled life.I can recommend without a shadow of a doubt the services of Harris, Keenan & Goldfarb to anyone who is in need of someone who will have your back!
Brittany DempseyBrittany Dempsey
16:02 08 Jan 24
My mother had an accident with her ankle back in 2019. I immediately contacted Harris, Keenan & Goldfarb on the day of the accident. They were extremely prompt and helpful. They attended to my mother's case beautifully and she's been recovering well. I'd like to thank you for being so diligent, kind and above all professional. I'd recommend this law firm to anyone who are injured and in need of legal assistance. My mother, Andrea, and I thank you for everything.
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