Over this past weekend, a 29-year-old man suffered a fatal car crash after driving onto Illinois Route 146, which is currently closed for construction. ABC KAIT 8, a local news station, reported that the man was attempting to turn around and, in the process, accelerated head first into a parked pavement roller. The crash marks the first ever on Illinois Route 146, given that the road is new and has yet to open to traffic.
The particular events taking place in this accident are quite rare. However, work zone car accidents in Illinois are a very common occurrence. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, on average there are 7,500 car accidents in work zones each year. Roughly 2,000 injuries and 28 fatalities result from these work zone crashes each year. Any Chicago car accident lawyer will tell you that there is a multitude of causes responsible for car accidents in any situation, ranging from general negligence to distracted or aggressive driving.
Crashes in the work zone share many of the same causes, but it is the unique conditions present in the work zone that can exacerbate them. For example, if a driver is distracted when entering into a work zone, he may not notice the various changes in his environment. These changes include reduced speed limits and often times fewer lanes. Risk of distraction is also higher since many people pay more attention to the construction than they do to the road. Additionally, those already aggravated drivers often become even more frustrated, and their driving suffers as a result.
Fortunately, road workers in Illinois have significant legal protection from negligent drivers. According to CyberdriveIllinois.com, “Illinois law requires motorists to slow down, yield to any authorized vehicles or workers in the area, change to a lane away from the workers, and to proceed with caution.” The protection of road workers is of the utmost importance, as such, the violation of these results in substantial penalization, including “fined of up to $10,000, a driver’s license suspension of 90 days to two years and possible imprisonment.”
Failure to adhere to these laws can result in further consequences as well. If a road worker is killed or injured as a result of driver negligence, they can take further action. These road workers may have a legal right to compensation for the pain and suffering, as well as financial costs, caused by the actions of negligent drivers. If you or someone you know has suffered at the hands of a negligent driver, you can contact our team of experienced Chicago car accident lawyers to find out what legal rights may be available to you.
Each and every Chicago car accident attorney at Levin & Perconti wants workers and drivers alike to be safe on the roads. We urge you to follow the rules of the road and make our community one we can all be proud of.