Experts provide safety tips, travel outlook for Christmas

Published: Dec. 21, 2022 at 5:03 PM EST
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UPPER MICHIGAN, Mich. (WLUC) - Despite the large snowstorm in the forecast for later this week, many are preparing to visit family for Christmas.

“AAA is forecasting 3.5 million Michiganders are planning to travel for the year-end holidays,” AAA Spokesperson Adrienne Woodland said. “Of that 3.5 million we expect about 3.2 million of those folks to be hitting the road for trips.”

Woodland says expected traffic is up from this time last year.

“In Michigan, we are expecting about 110,000 more people out and about traveling this year compared to last year,” Woodland said. “That 3.5 million Michiganders expected travel is the third busiest holiday on record since AAA began keeping these records back in 2000.”

Marquette County Sheriff Greg Zyburt says a little preparation can keep you and your family safe on the road.

“Make sure your car is ready to go for that long trip,” Zyburt said. “You don’t want to break down somewhere on the side of the road in this type of weather. If you do it is important to have an emergency kit.”

Zyburt says the primary reason for crashes in snowy weather is distracted driving

“You always hear people say the weather caused this accident,” Zyburt said. “Weather does not cause accidents, or it is very rare. What causes accidents is speed or careless distracted driving.”

Other safety tips include checking your tires, wiper fluid and engine coolant as well as packing food and water in case you are stranded on the side of the road.