A Chicago car accident lawyer, like many other types of attorneys, is often caricatured as a stuffy man or woman in a suit who uses legal system maneuvering to enrich themselves and their select clients. Of course that unfair portrayal bears little resemblance to reality. In fact, Illinois car accident lawsuits play a key role in saving lives and ensuring improved safety on our city’s roadways.
An op-ed in the Washington Post recently explained the role of car litigation and improved traffic safety. As we have reported on the blog, U.S. traffic deaths dropped to their lowest level in over 60 years last year, even as Americans traveled 21 billion more miles in 2010 than the year before.
What has led to the steady decline over the last decade?
Most experts point to the improved safety of cars as the main factor in that decline. Amazing advancements in car safety have been coupled with more stringent regulations and better consumer information. In short, safer cars are being made and bought more-when accidents strike the damage is minimized now more than ever before.
But that answer begs a second question: what led to investment in safer car technology, improved regulations, and better customer information?
Litigation and the civil justice system played the pivotal role.
Pressure from car accident lawsuits have been consistent and relentless forces over the past several decades pushing car manufacturers to step up and take responsibility for their product. Legal efforts have worked to heighten safety standards, reveal hidden car defects, spur legislative actions to mandate changes, and deter negligent companies from cutting corners at the expense of traveler safety.
One recent example involves the use of dangerous power window switches. Seven children were killed in 2004 when they were strangled by a car window after triggering a power window rocker switch. A much safer alternative existed at little cost to manufacturers. However, no changes were made to most vehicles until 2006, when car accident litigation finally forced companies to accept the need for safety in this area.
Our Chicago car crash lawyers at Levin & Perconti are proud to be a part of this tradition. We well understand that our advocacy on behalf in injured clients plays a role in raising the standards for all potential victims of these road accidents. We will continue to fight for the rights of these Illinois injury victims.
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