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Articles Posted in Auto Accident

One of the biggest causes of injuries for those in Chicago each year continues to be car accidents and other traffic incidents that occur on local roads and expressways. In fact, the Illinois Department of Transportation reported that 285,477 such traffic crashes happened in the state in 2013 alone. Of those, the official statistics report that 21.4 percent resulted in injuries to at least one person involved.

The percentage allocated to injury accidents likely is low, though, because it is based upon the self reports of victims immediately after they are involved in a collision. Typically, vehicles collided and a law enforcement official is sent to respond to the scene. That officer will ask the drivers and passengers involved if they are hurt and in need of an ambulance if an ambulance has not already been called to the area. There is a tendency among accident victims to underplay their symptoms right after an impact because they are in shock and unsure exactly how they feel. Often, their minds have not slowed enough for them to process what happened to them and the adrenaline rushing through their veins may delay the onset of pain.
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The laws in Illinois are designed to protect the safety of all who call the state home, yet when individuals ignore or violate the law, that safety can be jeopardized. One area that receives little attention but makes a massive impact on others is in the arena of automobile insurance. If you live in Illinois and you own a personal vehicle, you are required to carry insurance on that car that meets or exceeds state minimum levels. The purpose behind this mandatory insurance provision is to protect the innocent victims of car accidents who are hurt by enabling them to obtain financial compensation, a form of relief that can help victims get the medical treatment they need as well as provider payment for all of their other expenses.

Though the law applies to all drivers, the fact remains that every day, motorists without valid insurance drive in an around Chicago, posing a serious threat in the event they are involved in a crash. In fact, the Insurance Information Institute reported that an estimated 13.3 percent of all motorists on Illinois roads in 2012 were uninsured, contrary to and in violation of state laws. Victims who are hurt by these uninsured drivers soon realize that there may be no insurance funds to provide for their damages, pay for their medical expenses, or even compensate them while they are forced to miss work.
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There is a fallacy among drivers that is widely held in Chicago: drivers tend to believe they are better and more skilled than other motorists on the road. Regardless of how long they have been operating a car, where they learned and how they learned to drive, whether they have been cited for illegal conduct or caused a collision in the past, or even whether they have had subsequent training since an initial driver’s education program, the majority of motorists describe their skills as “better than average” when surveyed.

In fact, many Illinois drivers have the educational basis to be very effective and safe on the roadways but in practice, these drivers often ignore what they consider to be good advice for others. A typical example involves texting while driving or other distracted behaviors while behind the wheel. A survey from last year found that 98 percent of adult drivers stated that texting while driving was unsafe yet shockingly, 49 percent of surveyed drivers admitted to texting while driving.

This “do as I say, not as I do” approach is not only ignorant but it can be lethal. Experts have concluded that using a cell phone increases the risks of a car accident by 400 percent and that many of these collisions result in injuries or death to those involved.

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It is basic human instinct to try and control the circumstances surrounding our daily lives and that often stretches to our driving habits. Most motorists will claim that they operate their cars in a reasonable and safe manner, desiring to keep themselves and others near them safe and accident-free. However, a deeper look into Chicago’s driving scene reveals that numerous drivers speed, tailgate, exhibit signs of road rage, weave in and out of traffic, and even drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol on an occasional basis. With so many threatening and reckless factors contributing to roadways safety, it may be surprising just how many people avoid a car accident daily.

Any type of traffic accident can be serious but a rollover collision always poses a significant threat to personal safety. In fact, rollovers are estimated to make up about three percent of all collisions nationwide but they are involved in about 30 percent of deaths among those in a passenger vehicle. The most troubling aspect of a rollover crash is that so many can be prevented when you realize that nearly half of rollover incidents involve one or more drivers who have enough alcohol in their systems to make them impaired.

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As we move deeper into September and the autumn season, the temperatures and leaves will begin to fall. But before we can start enjoying hot cider and apple picking, Mother Nature has a few more weeks of summer heat in store for Chicago. These warmer temperatures increase the likelihood of tire blowouts which can not only be annoying to drivers but also a safety concern. Tire blowouts are incredibly dangerous as they can cause serious motor vehicle accidents which tend to lead to injuries to those involved.

Tire blowouts are more likely to occur when the weather is hot than they are when temperatures are mild. Warm temperatures make the surface of a road hot which can lead to increased friction between a tire and the road. This friction creates heat which puts greater stress on the tire’s components, increasing the odds that the tire will fail. Tires that are underinflated further struggle to accommodate the weight of the vehicle, causing the tires to become overloaded and increasing the friction they normally experience on the roadway.

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A typical motor vehicle accidents may involve two vehicles but some collisions can involve several vehicles. The more vehicles involved in a collision, the more likely it is that damage and injuries will be severe. Given the high volume of traffic in Chicago, multi-vehicle car accidents are very common.

Intersections by nature are a place where vehicles converge which is why multi-vehicle accidents are common in these locations. One distracted driver at a four way stop can cause an accident involving numerous cars just by failing to yield to the right-of-way. When intersections have unique designs, the possibility for multi-vehicle accidents increases. These unique designs are common with older intersections where three streets intersect instead of the typical two. If a driver is not paying attention, the driver can easily fail to see the third street and be unaware of incoming traffic.

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If you were hoping for some nice weather this Labor Day weekend, you are in luck: the forecast in Chicago is calling for mostly sunny skies and temperatures in the 70s and 80s. If you were hoping for an easy weekend of driving, though, the odds may not be in your favor as experts expect Labor Day to be one of the busiest driving holidays of the summer.

Millions of cars, trucks, vans, and SUVs are expected on Illinois roadways this weekend and today may be the busiest day for those who want to head out of town. The Illinois Tollway believes that 7.8 million vehicles will use some part of the tollway system during the long weekend as they leave the city, enter town, or simply drive around the state.

If you plan to be one of the millions who will travel by car this weekend, consider what you can do to keep yourself safe and to limit the risk that you will be the victim of a car accident.

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Chicago is a city that bursts with activity twelve months of the year. It can be hard to say that any specific time or season is more packed with an event,, than others but thanks in part to Chicago’s great outdoor venues, wonderful summer weather, and cold and snowy winters, now is the time of year when bands flock to the city to play for their loyal fans. In addition to numerous music festivals that take place in the summer, stand-alone concerts are happening at venues as big as Soldier Field and as small as the neighborhood bar you like to visit.

It is great to take advantage of this fun part of calling Chicago home but unfortunately, not everything associated with these concerts can be considered positive. Due to an increase in local traffic and confused motorists, car accidents and pedestrians collisions tend to be more common at and near concert venues in the hours immediately preceding and following a show than they are when a venue remains empty. Often, people who just want to have a good time end up the victims of these accidents and they may suffer from injuries due to the mistakes of another, like a driver who was distracted or was mistaken about the proper path to travel.

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Uber has exploded on the Chicago transportation scene in recent years. More and more people are opting to make Uber their go-to means of transit and favoring the ride share program over taxi cabs, personal cars, and even L trains and buses. As Uber expands, the company has been looking at innovating in new ways to keep their edge and to make themselves the first choice in rides for Americans as well as those in cities across the world. After all, Uber’s presence in 506 cities globally makes them a force to be reckoned with and that is unlikely to change for some time.

Today, Uber is making headlines as it has announced its plans to introduce self-driving vehicles in at least one major market and to have those vehicles on public roadways as early as this month. Illinois Uber users will not be experiencing these automated rides yet but those who grab an Uber in Pittsburg could have an entirely new type of experience.

Uber reports that its first fleet of self-driving vehicles will arrive in the Pittsburg area as a test market to see how these vehicles provide rides to Uber customers. The Volvo XC90s will drive themselves but will not be unmanned on the roads as an engineer will be behind the wheel and a co-pilot will also be present. Uber claims that the engineer will be able to take over in the event of a risky situation or an emergency, thereby ensuring the safety of passengers while this self-driving technology is still advancing.

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Rooftop BBQs, long days at the beach, and an endless string of parades, festivals, and concerts make Chicago the place to be once the temperature rises. City residents, Illinois suburbanites, and families from across the Midwest flock to our great city to see what Chicago summertime has to offer. Many residents also take advantage of the warm weather to travel elsewhere and vacation with family or friends.

However, a deadly trend accompanies the sunshine and fun: the 100 deadliest days. The 100 deadliest days span from Memorial Day to Labor Day, creating a spike in death rates caused by motor vehicle collisions. These numbers especially increase for teen drivers, with around 1,022 people perishing in accidents involving teens within those 100 days of summer each year. That’s around 10 lives lost every day.

During the summer motor vehicle collision rates experience a significant increase. With young and inexperienced drivers free from their textbooks, tourists coming into the city, and residents exiting, there are more vehicles on the road creating a higher chance for collisions. Chicago and the whole state of Illinois experience increased traffic and congestion on expressways making travel more dangerous.

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