Memorial Day Safety in Elephant Butte, NM

- Samuel Kane

Memorial Day weekend signals the start summer, welcoming the warmth with a three-day weekend. Long weekends are perfect for a getaway to Elephant Butte, New Mexico, where fellow campers, boaters, and sun-seekers await. These weekend revelers travel in droves to reach the beautiful destination that allows them to forget about work and worry, if only for a few days.

Holiday Weekened Crowded Conditions

As the Elephant Butte, NM Memorial Day weekend celebrations are being planned, keep in mind that thousands of other individuals and families are hitting the road and waterways at the same time. These crowded conditions can be evaluated ahead of time by knowing what you are getting into.

  • Park officials estimate nearly 90,000 boaters and campers visit Elephant Butte Lake over Memorial Day weekend
  • Another 19,000 visitors are estimated at Caballo Lake
  • Over 36 million drivers travel 50 miles or more from home to reach a destination like Elephant Butte, NM over Memorial Day weekend
  • Almost two million travel by bus to similar locations from Wednesday – Monday over the same weekend across the US

Beware of Accidents & Injuries

The increased traffic at Elephant Butte, and across the country, leads to safety issues on the roadways, on the water and at campgrounds and beaches alike. Common accidents, injuries and fatalities over the long weekend are caused by several circumstances, including:

  • Inexperienced boating
  • Impaired driving, boating or ATV driving
  • Fireworks
  • Campground falls
  • Fire pits, grilles and outdoor cooking stoves
  • Increased traffic accidents
  • Bicycle accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Drownings
  • Equipment failures

The statistics that accompany Memorial Day weekend injuries are startling, and provide proof that safety should always come first, especially during busy travel weekends.

Memorial Day Weekend Statistics

While the entire month of May is not immune to accidents, Memorial Day weekend-only statistics provide a glimpse at just how busy the kickoff to summer can be.

  • An average of 46,300 car crash-related injuries occur over the weekend in the US
  • On average, 397 traffic deaths occur, accounting for 12.45% of all traffic deaths in the entire month of May
  • 40% of the 397 deaths are alcohol related
  • 76% of fatal boating accident victims drown, 85% of that number are not wearing life jackets
  • Insurance boat claims average 69 per day through the year, but triple over this holiday weekend to 207 per day

In 2015 alone, the Coast Guard counted 4,158 accidents that involved 626 deaths, 2,613 injuries and approximately $42 million dollars of damage to property from recreational boating accidents throughout the United States.

Staying Safe this Memorial Day Weekend

Practicing safety as a priority will help keep you and your family safe this Memorial Day weekend. Here are a few tips to avoiding injury:

  • Always wear life jackets when boating, skiing or enjoying water sports
  • Seat belts are always required while traveling in a vehicle
  • Be sure to properly load/unload and tow ATVs, campers, boats and bicycles
  • Appoint designated drivers for all transportation modes, on and off the water
  • Know the rules of the water when boating, and respect them

It is important to your safety, and that of your family or guests, to stay alert at all times. While you can control your safety practices to avoid injury, you cannot control the behavior of others. Be alert, and keep an eye on unsafe conditions around you.

If you or a loved one is injured due to the negligence of another over the Memorial Day weekend, contact the Law Offices of Samuel I. Kane at (575) 526-5263. Our attorney group may be able to help you access compensation you weren’t aware existed from the injurious party.