The safety of the nation’s highways are a primary concern for all drivers, passengers, and those who will be near the roads at some point in their lives. Simply put, traffic problems are an issue for everyone and therefore increasing the safety on these streets should be a paramount concern across the country. When a car accident takes place and a victim is injured or killed, the suffering extends far beyond that crash scene to a victim’s family members, friends, loved ones, coworkers and neighbors with staggering economic consequences as well as personal.
Recent decades have seen an overall improvement in road safety as the number of fatal collisions and the lives lost in those crashes have decreased. But now, the first half of 2015 has shown a stark departure from the trend as the number of deaths is up approximately 8.1 percent over the same time period in 2014, a substantial increase that has left many experts questioning the reasons behind these accidents.
The United States Department of Transportation, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, released the new figures last week. These numbers are particularly disturbing as 2014 marked an all-time low for road-related fatalities in the country and experts had hoped the lower numbers would continue well into the future instead of being reversed the following year.
At this time, some of the increase is believed to be due to the fact that more miles have been driven in 2015 when compared to 2014. An increase of approximately 3.5 percent of miles traveled may be due to lower fuel costs and greater employment and with the more miles traveled, the greater the likelihood that a crash will happen. But a 3.5 percent increase in the number of miles traveled does not fully explain the more than 8 percent increase in deaths.
While the rise may remain unexplained for the time being, experts remind all those who drive that there are steps they can take to increase their personal safety and to limit the odds that they will be involved in a collision. Driving defensively and being prepared for the mistakes of others can be a reason that many motorists avoid collisions, as can decreasing a car’s speed. As traveling too fast is linked with roughly 50 percent of all accidents, it is wise to resist the temptation to speed so that your odds of a crash will be lower.
Also, make sure you take steps to improve your chance of survival if a car accident does take place in Chicago. The most important thing you can do is to always wear your seat belt and to make sure children are properly restrained. If you ride a motorcycle, opt to use a safety-approved helmet and other protective apparel to limit any injuries you may suffer in a collision.
Finally, know that if you are involved in an Illinois car accident and you suffer from physical harm as a result, you may be entitled to financial compensation. The personal injury team at Abels & Annes, P.C. is standing by 24/7 to take your call and to help you by providing you with a case consultation about your crash. There is no cost and no obligation for speaking with us and if we represent you for your injuries, we will not charge you a fee unless we successfully make a recovery on your behalf.
At Abels & Annes, P.C., we believe in fighting for victims’ rights and that is why we only represent people who have been hurt – never insurance companies. If we can help you, call us toll free at (855) 529-2442 or locally at (312) 924-7575 today.
Prior Blog Entry:
Study Finds Kennedy Expressway Congestion Worst in Nation, Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published November 25, 2015.
Highway Death Toll Takes Tumbling Turn: Up 8.1% This Year, by Jeff Plungis, Insurance Journal, published November 25, 2015.