On average, more than 800 car accidents happened every day in Illinois in 2014, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation. These collisions took hundreds of different forms and caused millions, if not billions, of dollars’ worth of damages. But the most devastating of those collisions were the ones that involved injuries to the people involved.
The good news is that more than 75 percent of accidents in the state in 2014 did not result in injuries, according to local officials. The bad news is that 61,084 of the collisions were deemed to be injury accidents and that 845 accidents were fatal collisions. Of all the accidents that happened in 2014, more than 20 percent proved to cause harm to at least one person involved.
It is important to understand what these numbers really mean because anyone – even those who do not drive – can become the victim of a traffic accident that may leave them harmed. First, injury accidents are determined by officials who respond to the scene. They question those involved to see if anyone was hurt and they fill out a report accordingly. However, if a victim at the scene of a crash claims they are not hurt only to later realize that they are injured but that their injuries were masked by the adrenaline or other factors of the collision, reports typically are not amended to reflect the new categorization as having caused injuries. This means that the number and percentage of crashes deemed “injury-causing” is low every year.
Further, a collision is determined to have caused injuries if even one person was hurt. If multiple people in multiple vehicles sustain injuries, there is no separate classification for that type of accident which means that though 61,084 accidents happened with injuries, the number of injured victims presumably is much higher than that.
Similarly, it is critical that the public realizes that the more severe a car accident is in the Chicago area, the more likely injuries are to result. Practically speaking, this means that the damage done to a vehicle and the financial fallout to a victim tend to be far greater when injuries are involved. Both minor fender-benders that produce no noticeable harm and extreme collisions involving totaled cars are considered “accidents” for purposes of reporting but the damages from the latter tend to outweigh the damages of the former by severalfold.
If you were unfortunate enough to be involved in a car accident and you were harmed, know that you may be entitled to financial compensation for your damages including any medical expenses you incurred. Your rights likely go beyond that to include any wages you missed while you were unable to work and intangible damages like the pain and suffering you were forced to endure.
If you have questions about your legal options, know that the personal injury attorneys at Abels & Annes, P.C. offer a case consultation without cost or obligation to all victims who contact us toll free at (855) 529-2442 or locally at (312) 924-7575. We have a licensed lawyer available to take your call 24 hours a day, seven days a week and we will keep everything discussed during the consultation confidential. When you call us, you will know that we have the rights of victims on our minds because injury cases are the only type of claim we handle and we never represent insurance companies.
If you have questions, let our legal team provide you with answers toll free at (855) 529-2442.
Prior Blog Entry:
Nursing Home Workers Hurt on the Job are More Likely to Lose their Employment, Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published February 15, 2016.
2014 Illinois Traffic Crash Facts and Statistics, Illinois Department of Transportation.