Abels & Annes

42616-300x168Rideshare operations such as Uber and Lyft have become extremely popular in Chicago and other cities throughout the United States–and it is easy to see why. Ordering a ride through your smartphone is faster, easier, and often less expensive than hailing a cab. In addition, many people believe that rideshare services are safer. Unfortunately, Uber accidents still often happen in the Chicago area.

Uber does insure drivers and passengers involved in car crashes. However, when drivers are using their vehicles for personal use, they are covered under their personal auto insurance policy. If a driver is using the app but has yet to start a trip, they are covered under their personal insurance policy and Uber’s contingent liability policy, which provides up to $50,000 per injury for a total of $100,000 and up to $25,000 in property damage in the event the driver’s personal insurance does not cover the issue. If an Uber driver has accepted a fare or is on a trip with a passenger, they are are covered by a one million dollar liability policy and a one million dollar uninsured/underinsured policy. The UM/UIM coverage protects drivers and passengers in event of an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist.

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10416Death is an unfortunate part of life, but sometimes due to the negligence of others death comes too soon. When someone dies due to the fault of another’s recklessness or negligence their loved ones, under Illinois law, may be able to claim damages against the at-fault party.

There is no amount of money that can compensate fully for the loss of a loved one but damages can help families cover medical costs, funeral costs, and the cost of living after the loss of the loved one. This allows the family to focus on what matters most – healing. Damages can help a suffering family begin to move forward with their lives without the stress of financial debts hanging overhead.

Wrongful death claims can include a number of types of fatal accidents and can stem from most negligence claims, but most often these claims arise from motor vehicle accidents. A myriad of scenarios can give rise to wrongful death claims.

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51316-300x239It is no secret the construction industry is dangerous, reporting the most injuries and fatalities across American industries. Electrocutions or electrical hazards is considered one of the ‘Fatal Four’ – a hazard that contributes to sixty-percent of construction workplace fatalities each year.

Electrical injuries are very common for workers in America with approximately 160-180 fatal electrical injuries reported every year according to the Illinois Center for Injury Prevention. Half of these electricians occurred in the construction industry.

Construction workers are not the only ones exposed to potential electric injuries. Anyone who works on electrical tasks is at risk. These accidents are often common in factory settings and those working closely with public utilities. CTA employees are also exposed to a substantial risk given the dangerous third rail utilized by CTA trains which provides electric power to keep trains moving.

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photo-43-300x225Under the Illinois Animal Control Act, if you or a loved one are injured by an animal, you may have a claim against the owner. The law holds animal owners strictly liable if their pet attacks another person unless the attack was provoked or certain other exceptions are met under the law. The most common animal attack incidents in Chicago are dog bites or dog attacks.

Our pets quickly become a part of the family, and no one wants to believe that their dog could harm anyone, especially a friend or family member. While many dogs are gentle and loving creatures, these incidents do occur frequently. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 4.7 million Americans experience a dog bite injury every year.

Children are most commonly the victim of dog bites. Of those 4.7 Americans injured by dog attacks, half of these are children. Children often do not understand that a dog is not a play toy and may antagonize the dog, making the dog uncomfortable and leading to an attack. It can be difficult for a dog to understand a child’s innocent intent when the dog perceives the child’s conduct as threatening.

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411162-300x168The most recent statistics report that across America, over 1.4 million individuals reside in nursing homes. As of 2014 there were almost 16,000 nursing homes with this number steadily rising. In Illinois alone there are 1,200 long-term care facilities serving more than 100,000 residents.

Nursing homes are heavily regulated and frequently inspected by the state’s public health department in accordance with the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act and guidelines to ensure safe and dignified care for those in nursing homes. However, despite these efforts many facilities do not comply with these care standards. One of the most common violations is the improper and negligent care of immobile patients.

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1717-300x225With winter encompassing Chicago, the season of slipping and falling is upon us. Every winter, countless individuals become injured due to falling on icy surfaces. We’ve all experienced it; you’re walking along and then without any warning you find your feet slipping out from underneath and you end up flat on your back on the cold and icy surface.

These accidents can happen anywhere and commonly occur in parking lots and on public sidewalks. Over one million Americans are injured in slip and fall accidents every year and these accidents increase during the winter months thanks to snow and ice. These accidents are especially common in the Chicago area as the temperature often drops below freezing and walking is a common form of transportation. Slip and fall accidents can result in injuries ranging for mild to severe. Luckily most people walk away with only a few scrapes and bruises, but sometimes these accidents can lead to broken bones, damaged muscles, large wounds that require stitches, or even a concussion. These more serious injuries can require extended and expensive medical treatment like surgery or physical therapy.

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10416The phrase “multi-car collision” typically is used to describe accidents with a large number of cars. However, it can mean anything from a crash with two or three vehicles to one with hundreds. These incidents happen most commonly in areas with heavy traffic, unexpected congestion, and in parts of the country where weather can be treacherous. Put simply, Illinois faces an incredibly large risk of being home to multi-car collisions at any time of the year but particularly during the winter months.

Like most types of car accidents, multi-car collisions can happen for a number of reasons and therefore can be difficult to prevent or avoid. One of the most common causes of these crashes is a vehicle following too closely for safety. A driver who keeps her vehicle too close to the vehicle in front of her is at risk for causing a rear-end collision, and if traffic is heavy, that initial rear-end collision may turn into a chain reaction crash involving several vehicles all being struck from behind. Areas like the Kennedy Expressway and the Eisenhower and known for having chain reaction collisions particularly during morning and evening rush hours.

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41316(2)Traditionally, the Thanksgiving holiday is one of the most traveled times of the year in America. Those in Chicago are no exception to this as thousands both leave and enter the city each year, traveling to celebrate with friends and family and to give thanks for all they have in their lives. This year, AAA predicts that the roadways in Illinois and elsewhere will be congested as 48.7 million Americans will travel at least 50 miles from home during the weekend.

Experts believe that this will be the highest-traveled Thanksgiving holiday since 2007 and that approximately one million additional travelers will hit the road when compared to the numbers seen in 2015.

Travelers will be using numerous modes of transportation including planes, trains, and automobiles this weekend but AAA reports that the vast majority will travel by car. Nearly 90 percent of those leaving their homes this year will use a personal vehicle of some sort to get to their destination and relatively low prices of gasoline may be encouraging some of the driving.

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10416All kinds of accidents happen in the United States every year. If you drive in Illinois or if you happen to use public sidewalks, crosswalks, or areas near roadways, you face the risk of being involved in a car accident or other traffic incident with little or no warning. Some collisions are due to a driver’s lack of attention while others may be blamed on alcohol or drugs. In reality, thousands of factors can lead to and even cause a collision between one or more parties.

Chicago sees more than its fair share of traffic incidents every year. In 2014, the Illinois Department of Transportation noted that 143,943 accidents happened in Cook County, the majority of which happened within or immediately around Chicago’s city limits. Among those collisions, 27,075 caused injuries and 211 proved to be fatal, changing the lives of those involved and their loved ones forever.

Across the state that year, 296,049 collisions occurred which averages out to 811 traffic accidents every single day.

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11916What is the true purpose of a red light enforcement camera? Well, it may depend on who you ask. Though the publicly stated position is to limit the number of vehicles running red lights and therefore reduce the number of red light car accidents, many drivers feel that the motives may be less altruistic by local governments.

Some in Chicago have been very vocal about their views on red light cameras, stating that the cameras are designed to raise revenue through the issuance of tickets and not designed to improve safety. However, new information released by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (“IIHS”) may dispute this widely held belief as the research concludes that use of red lights is saving lives.

According to IIHS, red light camera programs in 79 large U.S. cities are believed to have saved nearly 1,300 through 2014 at a time when car accidents continue to be one of the major causes of unintentional death in America.

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