Over 800,000 Maryland residents will be traveling more than 50 miles during the Thursday to Monday period this weekend. This is the largest number of travelers for Memorial Day Weekend since the summer of 2005, before the financial crisis. AAA Mid-Atlantic projects that close to 90% of all Maryland travelers will be driving, a 5% increase from last year. Low gas prices that have been in place for the last several months are a major factor contributing to the increase in people choosing to drive to their destination. The average price of regular unleaded gas in Maryland is around $2.67, which is about $1 cheaper than this time last year. While a majority of Marylanders will be driving by car, the number of people flying to their destination is expected to increase by 2.1% with about 58,500 fliers.
Nationally, the number of Americans expected to travel this holiday weekend is over 37 million, also the highest number in about a decade.
In Maryland, Memorial Day Weekend is usually the start of the busy season for the beaches, which means increased traffic along the Bay Bridge. The Maryland Transportation Authority projects over 360,000 vehicles to cross the Bay Bridge this holiday weekend. Traffic congestion will likely frustrate many drivers as they try to get to their destination. With increased traffic, comes a higher risk of accidents. Some of the most common causes of accidents when driving to the beach by way of the Bay Bridge include speeding, distractions, drunk driving, and driving too closely to the car in front of you. To best avoid the worst of the traffic along the Bay Bridge, officials suggest traveling before 10 am on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday, before 7 am on Saturday, after 10 pm on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday, or after 5 pm on Saturday.
Remember to abide by the posted speed limits, especially along the Bay Bridge, and wear your seatbelt at all times when driving in the car. Some of the worst accidents have occurred along the Bridge, so be cautious of other drivers and get to your final destination safely.
If you or a family member has been injured or killed in an accident caused by the fault or negligence of another person and would like to consult an experienced Maryland personal injury attorney for free, contact us at (855) 954-4141 to schedule an appointment at one of our office locations in Ocean City or throughout Maryland or visit us online.