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Washington ranks as fifth-safest state to celebrate Thanksgiving

UPDATED: Wed., Nov. 25, 2020

President Donald Trump pardons Corn, the national Thanksgiving turkey, in the Rose Garden of the White House on Tuesday in Washington, D.C., as National Turkey Federation Chairman Ron Kardel of Walcott, Iowa, and first lady Melania Trump watch.  (Susan Walsh/Associated Press)
President Donald Trump pardons Corn, the national Thanksgiving turkey, in the Rose Garden of the White House on Tuesday in Washington, D.C., as National Turkey Federation Chairman Ron Kardel of Walcott, Iowa, and first lady Melania Trump watch. (Susan Walsh/Associated Press)

Safety and Thanksgiving features stories have been a staple of holiday coverage in newspapers for many years. That hasn’t changed, but what is different are the issues. Pre-coronavirus, it was about safety on the road and air travel.

However, folks are discouraged to make the trip home to celebrate Thanksgiving this week due to COVID-19. It’s about another type of safety in 2020, and one of the safest places you can be according to a recent wallethub.com survey is Washington state.

The Evergreen State ranks fifth as the safest state to spend Thanksgiving.

“It wasn’t a big surprise considering the low COVID-19 death rate and hospitalization rate registered recently and the small number of positive tests,” Wallethub analyst Jill Gonzalez said during an interview from Washington, D.C.

Wallethub used numbers from the week of Nov. 8, when Washington was seventh-lowest in the nation regarding COVID-19 positive tests per capita and had the fifth-lowest COVID-19 hospitalization rate.

In non-COVID-19 categories, Washington is 11th lowest in terms of DUI fatalities in motor-vehicle crashes around Thanksgiving. Some of the other factors are crime rate, pedestrian fatalities and multigenerational families living within a household.

“The categories were chosen by WalletHub analysts in conjunction with academic experts,” Gonzalez said. “The selection of the metrics was based on their relevance, as well as availability of data.”

Washington is the lone Western state in the top 10. The most significant criteria is safety, and much of it is derived from COVID-19 results.

It’s a very different Thanksgiving with the CDC advising Americans to avoid holiday travel and keep holiday gatherings to individual households.

Idaho placed 29th in the safest-state rundown. Vermont topped the list, followed by Maine, New Hampshire and New York.

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