Kentucky residents who plan to visit friends or relatives during the upcoming Fourth of July holiday may be wise to fasten their safety belts and take extra precautions. According to data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, July Fourth is the deadliest day to drive in the United States. Figures from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reveal that drunk driving accidents over the Independence Day holiday period accounted for 40 percent of all highway fatalities between 2007 and 2011.

About 200 road users are killed each year in accidents that take place over the Fourth of July weekend, and alcohol is often discovered to have played a role. Americans buy more alcohol to celebrate the nation’s birthday than they do on New Year’s Eve or St. Patrick’s Day, according to research conducted by Esurance.

Heavy traffic congestion over the Fourth of July weekend adds another element of danger for road users, and the American Automobile Association expects more than 45 million Americans to take road trips of 50 miles or longer to celebrate Fourth of July festivities. This marks the fifth consecutive year that traffic volume will increase during the July Fourth period, according to the motorist advocacy group.

Police investigations are usually thorough when serious car accidents may have been caused by alcohol consumption or drug use. An experienced personal injury attorney pursuing compensation on behalf of an accident victim could use the contents of a police report to establish a pattern of negligent behavior. Toxicology test results may reveal that the defendant was impaired when they crashed.