Senators Reverend Warnock and Capito: “The Senate wants all people of the United States to understand the life-saving importance of wearing a seat belt and encourages motorists to drive safely, not just during the holiday season, but every time they get behind the wheel”
In Georgia, there were 18 traffic crash deaths during the 2022 Thanksgiving holiday period
In addition to fatal crashes, there were nearly 600 traffic crashes statewide during this period, resulting in almost 300 injuries
From 2017 to 2021, 82 Georgians were killed in traffic crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday period and there was a total of 16,171 traffic crashes reported that resulted in 5,727 injuries
Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) led the introduction of the bipartisan Drive Safer Sunday Resolution to encourage Americans nationwide to exercise greater caution in their holiday travels amid a period of historically increased traffic incidents and fatalities.
“As a father of two young children, the safety of my family is paramount when traveling to see loved ones during the holidays,” said Senator Reverend Warnock. “We know safer streets require each of us to play our part, so I implore Georgians and all Americans to exercise caution amid the busy holiday season.”
“The Sunday after Thanksgiving is one of the busiest—if not the busiest—travel day in our country,” said Senator Capito. “Our resolution encourages everyone that will be on our roads to drive carefully because safety is and will always be my top transportation priority.”
During the 2021 Thanksgiving weekend, there were 361 passenger deaths in traffic crashes, and half of all victims were unrestrained by a seat belt. Moreover, of the 361 deaths over the 2021 Thanksgiving weekend, 190 involved alcohol-impaired driving crashes.
“Since the Sunday after Thanksgiving is one of the most congested road traffic days of the year and the day our son, Cullum, was killed while driving back to college, we hope that Drive Safer Sunday will encourage extra focus on safe driving that day,” said Steve and Susan Owings, Co-Founders of Road Safe America and Institute for Safer Trucking board members. “We also hope that this safety focus will be carried on during the holiday season and all year around.”
In Georgia, there were 18 traffic crash deaths during the 2022 Thanksgiving holiday period. In addition to fatal crashes, there were nearly 600 traffic crashes statewide during this period, resulting in almost 300 injuries. From 2017 to 2021, 82 Georgians were killed in traffic crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday period and there was a total of 16,171 traffic crashes reported that resulted in 5,727 injuries.
“The Sunday after Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel days of the year, and it’s also one of the deadliest,” said Harry Adler, Principal at the Institute for Safer Trucking. “We are thankful that Senator Warnock and Senator Capito introduced a resolution to designate this day as ‘Drive Safer Sunday,’ to help raise awareness about the importance of safe driving.”
This resolution would designate the Sunday after Thanksgiving as “Drive Safer Sunday” and encourage:
1. K-12 schools, colleges, teachers, and administrators to launch campus-wide educational campaigns to urge students to focus on safe driving;
2. Trucking firms to alert employees to focus on safe driving the Sunday after Thanksgiving and publicize its importance on the Citizens Band Radio Service and at truck stops;
3. Clergy to remind congregations to travel safely when attending services;
4. Law enforcement to remind drivers and passengers to drive safely;
5. Americans wear seat belts and educate themselves about highway safety.
First introduced in 2005, this resolution has historically been a bipartisan effort led by one of Georgia’s U.S. Senators. The effort was started by Steve and Susan Owings, board members of the Institute for Safer Trucking from Atlanta, whose son Cullum was tragically killed in a truck crash after returning to college from their family Thanksgiving in 2002. Since Cullum’s passing, Steve and Susan Owings have advocated for safer trucking and have worked with Georgia’s Congressional delegation to introduce this resolution. As a member of the U.S. Senate committee overseeing the nation’s transportation policy, transportation safety will always be a priority for Senator Warnock.
The full text of the resolution can be found HERE.