Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Whether you are single or taken, this day brings up a lot of different feelings and emotions for people. For many, Valentine’s is the time to show those around you just how much they mean to you. As you celebrate the love that you share, it is vital to be proactive about accident prevention. When most people think of Valentine’s Day, images of red roses and romantic dinners come to mind. But for countless others, this February holiday is full of heartache and tragedy. Although Valentine’s Day creates the perfect occasion to get dressed up and spend a night on the town with your partner, friends, or family, it also carries inherent dangers.
There are many reasons for this, including the fact that Valentine’s Day activities often involve getting behind the wheel of the car. Depending on where you live, this could be dangerous in itself, as the roads may be covered in ice or snow. In addition to winter car accidents, we also see more house fires and cooking accidents on Valentine’s Day.
With the special holiday nearly here, we thought it would be helpful to go over some tips for avoiding disaster on Valentine’s Day. Not only are there more people on the roads heading out for date night, but fires and other home accidents are common. If you are injured in a Valentine’s Day accident, contact Wormington & Bollinger today. We know the last thing you expect to receive on this romantic day is an injury, but accidents happen, and it is important you are prepared.
Valentine’s Day: By the Numbers
Drunk driving accidents are all-too common this time of year. From elaborate dinners gone wrong to overindulging when partaking in post-meal drinks, disaster can strike in the blink of an eye. If you’ve walked into your local grocery store lately, chances are you’ve noticed the towering displays of heart-shaped candy, stuffed animals, flowers, cards, and more. With this in mind, it should come as no surprise that Americans spend a lot of money to show their loved ones they care.
How much does true love cost? Let’s look at the numbers:
- Americans are forecasted to spend a record-breaking $27.4 billion this Valentine’s Day (a 32 percent increase from last year’s record)
- The average consumer spends $221.34 on Valentine’s Day gifts
- $4.7 billion is spent on jewelry for Valentine’s every year
- 144 million cards are exchanged every Valentine’s Day
- 2 percent of the U.S. population are single (110.6 million people)
- Chocolate accounts for 75 percent of the total U.S. Valentine’s candy sales
- 53 percent of Americans say they plan on spending money on someone for Valentine’s Day
- 62 percent of men expect to spend on a loved one (compared to 45 percent of women)
- Americans spend $81.56 on their dog for Valentine’s Day
- Gen Y spends the most on gifts each year (63 percent of Gen Yers plan on purchasing a gift)
- Just 39 percent of Baby Boomers buy gifts
- 43 million Americans (17 percent of the population) received an unwanted Valentine’s gift last year (that’s $9.5 billion spent on unappreciated gifts)
These numbers paint a picture of just how important Valentine’s Day is to many Americans. And while the majority of U.S adults are trying to come up with the most romantic gesture or best gift possible, others are just trying to avoid injury.
Valentine’s Day Accidents Bring Heartbreak
The National Safety Council (NSC) states that the holidays – specifically the ones that fall over the weekend – carry more risks than others. This year, Valentine’s Day is on a Friday. Because of this, there’s a good chance we will see a higher rate of accidents and fatalities due to more people on the roads, increased alcohol consumption, and candlelit dinners at home.
Let’s look at some of the most common scenarios that lead to Valentine’s Day accidents:
- Accidents from fancy dinners – If you are planning on whipping up an elaborate meal for your one true love in the kitchen this Valentine’s Day, be sure to practice safe knife handling and never leave items unattended on the stove or oven.
- Drunk driving – It’s important to remember that the rules still apply when it comes to drinking and driving. If you have a reservation somewhere, and you plan on enjoying a nice bottle of wine (or two), be smart and have a ride set up. We promise your date won’t look down on you for ordering a Lyft over getting behind the wheel after a couple of drinks.
- Distractions are everywhere – Being a safe driver doesn’t just mean driving sober. These days, there are plenty of distractions on the road, including navigation systems, stereos, and smartphones. Protect you and your passenger by keeping your eyes on the road!
- Candlelight – Sure, candles are romantic and “set the mood,” but they can also be dangerous. If you are using candles on this lovely holiday, ensure all flames are away from flammable fabrics and other items. Never leave candles unattended, and be sure to blow them out before bed.
Fall in Love with These Valentine’s Day Safety Tips
The above are just a few of the ways Valentine’s Day can go wrong. At Wormington & Bollinger, your safety matters to us. We want to ensure you have a safe and happy Valentine’s Day. Here are a few tips to help you avoid injury and accident:
- Arrange a ride if you will be drinking alcohol at dinner or while celebrating with friends
- Keep chocolates and other sweet treats away from pets
- Use extra caution with candles
- Turn lights on at your house if you will be staying elsewhere
- Don’t announce your travel plans on social media (60 percent of all burglars know their victims)
- Check the weather forecast before heading out
- Limit the amount of cash you have on hand
- Pay attention to other drivers
- Be alert
- Never drink and drive
If you suffer an injury or accident this Valentine’s Day, contact Wormington & Bollinger. Our experienced McKinney personal injury lawyers offer free consultations and are here to help you understand your rights. We wish you all a safe and joyous holiday!