News You Can Use 

December brings more parties and social events and, unfortunately, a rise in impaired driving accidents. Alcohol is responsible for about one-third of all traffic crash fatalities in the United States, and drugged driving rates are climbing. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 56% of drivers involved in serious or fatal crashes tested positive for at least one drug between October – December 2020.

What can you do?

Designate a sober driver, plan a ride-share pick-up, enter contact information for a cab into your phone before heading to the party.
There are lots of tasty, festive alcohol-free drink recipes to try and share. We’ve included a few below, and there are tons more on the web.
Many states have “social host liability” laws that hold the party host responsible for injuries that occur as a result of providing alcohol to guests. Have alcohol-free choices available, serve plenty of food, display numbers for local cab and ride-share companies, and – most importantly – don’t be afraid to intervene. If a guest has too much to drink, take the keys and call a sober driver for them.
Winter Wassail
Moette Punch
Cardinal Punch
Winter Wassail Moette Punch Cardinal Punch

Caution: Winter Weather Conditions Ahead

AAA Northeast typically responds to more than 1,000,000 roadside assistance calls in the winter. Should you run into trouble on the road, we’ll be there for you. But we recommend you take precautions to prepare for winter driving by having an emergency kit in your car. 

Among the items you should have to keep you (and your pets!) safe are:

  • Mobile phone and car charger

  • First-aid kit

  • Blanket(s) and/or extra sweatshirt or jacket

  • Drinking water and snacks. Include a small water bowl and treats for your pets!

  • Flashlight and extra batteries

  • Rags, paper towels, or wipes
  • Ice scraper and snow brush

  • Jumper cables or jump pack

  • Traction aid, such as sand, salt or non-clumping kitty litter

  • Basic toolkit, including duct tape and warning devices such as flares or reflectors

  • Tarp, raincoat and gloves

  • Small shovel

Winter Driving

Your tires are the best protection on snow and icy roads. If you’re on the roads before the plows or drive frequently in snowy conditions, consider purchasing snow tires for the winter months. Even if you only hit the roads only occasionally in the winter, make sure your tires are in good shape, with a minimum of 4/32” of tread. While driving, try to maintain a following distance of at least 5-6 seconds to ensure you have room to stop.

If You Get Stuck on the Road

  • Stay with your vehicle. It provides shelter and makes it easier for people to find you.

  • Be visible. Tie a brightly colored cloth to an antenna or at the top of a rolled-up window to signal distress.

  • Clear the exhaust pipe of snow, ice and mud.

  • Stay warm with anything you can find to insulate your body from the cold. Blankets and heavy clothing, newspapers or even floor mats can help.

  • Conserve fuel. If possible, only run the engine and heater long enough to remove the chill.
A man loading a Christmas tree to the top of his car.

‘Tis the Season for Christmas Trees!

This holiday, take a few extra minutes to make sure your Christmas tree is secured safely for the trip back to your house.

  • Optimally, secure the tree to a roof-mounted carrying rack, with the cut portion of the tree trunk facing the front of the vehicle.

  • If you use a blanket to wrap the tree to reduce scratching, tie the blanket to the tree before securing the tree to the vehicle.

  • Secure the tree from the trunk to the front right and left corners, and then from the trunk to the back corners. Make sure limbs don’t impede front or side vision.

  • Remember the extra weight on your vehicle can cause you to lose control quicker.

  • Be sure to securely store any implements (saw or axe) so they cannot become projectiles should a collision occur.

Roadside Assistance Truck