The two busiest days on Texas highways are the day before Thanksgiving and the Sunday following Thanksgiving according to AAA Texas and Texas Department of Transportation research.

In addition to increasing congestion along heavily traveled corridors, more motorists on the road increase the potential for crashes during the holiday season.In 2011, there were 848 serious injuries and 26 deaths from traffic crashes that occurred during the Thanksgiving holiday reporting period.

In an effort to reduce the number of traffic fatalities this year, TxDOT is asking drivers to follow a few simple rules of the road:

Pay attention

Buckle seatbelts

Put phone away

Left lane for passing only

Never drink and drive

Obey all traffic laws

Hazardous weather can also cause problems for drivers. Motorists can reduce their risk by knowing some winter weather driving tips and practicing a few road safety habits, such as planning ahead, and being aware of alerts and advisories in your area. Winter road preparedness includes the following:Ensure your vehicle is properly maintained.Stay tuned to local news, road closures, changing conditions and weather alerts.Check online highway conditions information at DriveTexas™ (™ is mobile friendly and a great tool that offers real-time road conditions, traffic and weather feeds. Travelers can also call TxDOT’s highway conditions line at (800) 452-9292 for routing and trip-planning information.