With additional motorists on the road during the holidays, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is urging drivers to exercise caution. Last year, between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day, there were 2,253 crashes in Virginia, resulting in 1,005 injuries and 21 deaths.
“Being a responsible driver should be a priority every time you get behind the wheel, not just on vacation,” DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb, the governor’s traffic safety representative, said in a news release. “It’s up to us to protect each other on the roads of the Commonwealth. Slow down, fasten your seatbelt, be careful and drive sober.
Here are some safe driving reminders before the holidays:
1. Prepare before you go — make sure your car is safe for winter driving; check the oil, put air in the tires and prepare an emergency kit
2. Drive without distraction — many distractions exist while driving, but cell phones are a major distraction; just put it away and drive
3. Slow down — don’t go over the speed limit and keep a safe distance between you and other vehicles
4. Move – drivers must move into a lane if passing stopped vehicles with flashing amber, red or blue lights
5. Designate a sober driver — don’t drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs; organize an alternative mode of transport
6. Fasten your seat belt – make sure everyone in the vehicle is properly buckled up, including that the correct car seats are properly installed for children.
The Virginia DMV’s full-service customer service centers will be closed for the Christmas and New Years holidays from December 23-25 and December 31-January 31. 1.
More than 50 DMV services will be available online at dmvNOW.com or by mail during holiday closings.
DMV’s 75 Customer Service Centers continue to operate by appointment only on Monday and Friday and by appointment only on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday (in offices with Saturday hours) . In October, DMV began offering a hybrid alternate service model to provide flexibility for customers.