The Chicago injury lawyers at Abels & Annes wish each of you a safe and enjoyable Fourth of July weekend. In preventing injuries over the holiday, we encourage you to leave the fireworks displays to the professionals, drink responsibly and don’t drink and drive, practice safe boating and driving habits and speak with your teenagers about staying safe and making good decisions.
Drink Responsibly and Don’t Drink and Drive
As our Chicago accident lawyers report frequently, drunk driving is responsible for one-third of Chicago car accidents as well as accidents in Cook County and throughout Illinois. Nationwide, someone dies every 45 minutes in a car accident involving a drunk driver. In Illinois, 434 of 1,043 fatalities involved alcohol in 2008, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
The U.S. Coast Guard reported 4,789 accidents killed 709 boaters and injured more than 3,300 in 2008. The leading causes of boating accidents include careless and reckless operation, operator inattention, no proper lookout, operator inexperience and passenger/skier behavior. Alcohol use is a factor in nearly 1 in 5 boating fatalities. In 2008, a total of 119 Illinois boating accidents were reported, killing 19 boaters and injuring 79.
Visit the Illinois Department of Natural Resources for more information on safe boating and boater education.
Teen Driving Safety
We offer a host of safe teen driving information, both here and on our Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog. Please take the time to speak with your teenagers about the importance of making good driving decisions this summer.
The safest way to enjoy fireworks this weekend is by leaving the displays to the professionals. Fireworks injuries are not an abstract concept — they are a tragically regular occurrence during the New Year’s and Fourth of July Holidays.
-In 2006, 11 people were killed and more than 9,200 were treated in emergency rooms for fireworks-related injuries, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
-More than two-thirds of fireworks injuries occur around the Fourth of July.
-One-third of those injured were children under 15. Young people under 20 sustained nearly half of all fireworks injuries.
-The most frequent injuries reported involved the hands (2,300), eyes (1,500) and the head, face and ears (1,400).
-More than half of all injuries involve burns. Other common injuries include contusions, lacerations and foreign objects in the eyes.
-Fireworks injuries are associated with blindness, third-degree burns and permanent scarring. Life-threatening residential and motor-vehicle fires are also reported.
-Firecrackers caused the greatest number of injuries (1,300) followed by sparklers (1,000) and rockets (800).
-More than one-third of fireworks related deaths involve professional devices that are illegally sold to consumers.
-Common causes of fireworks injuries include availability of high-grade fireworks to the consumers, being too close to fireworks, operator error and lack of coordination, child curiosity and experimenting with homemade devices.
If you are injured in an accident over the Fourth of July holiday, the Chicago injury attorneys at Abels & Annes offer free and confidential appointments to discuss your rights. Call (866) 99-ABELS. There is no fee unless you win.