Most Chicagoans know that safe driving requires one to have both hands on the wheel and attention on the road. It is becoming common knowledge that texting while driving is an unacceptable risk both to those in the car as well as other travelers on the road. Illinois car accidents often result. It is for that reason that it is illegal to text and drive in Illinois. However, as a new article in the Sun-Times explains, that doesn’t stop people from doing it each and every day.
Research shows that texting while driving decreases reaction time by 35 percent. Obviously one’s steering capacity is also severely limited while texting. In total, those who text and drive are a staggering 23 times more likely to get into a car accident. The risk is greatest for our youngest drivers, as 16 to 20 year olds have the highest proportion of deadly distraction related crashes.
While awareness of distracted driving is increasing, far too many accidents still occur because of the problem. In 2009 alone nearly 5,500 people were killed in distracted driving accidents with nearly 450,000 more being injured. Increased enforcement efforts are being aimed at distracted divers. Texting while driving is considered a moving violation in Illinois and, if caught, a citation and significant fine will result. Besides enforcement, local agencies are also stepping up awareness efforts to ensure the public appreciates the risks.
Our Chicago car crash lawyers have worked with far too many families who were hurt in car accidents. We understand the devastation that results-nothing that increases the chance of being involved in an accident should be supported. We urge all Illinois drivers to practice safe driving by eliminating distractions and keeping the focus on the road. Parents should be sure to be a good role model as well, so that their children understand the significance of safe driving.
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