Last Wednesday, an Illinois car accident attorney of ours pointed out an article posted by the Daily-Chronicle collect and report about motor vehicle accidents in 2011. Some counties, such as DeKalb, reported a decrease in the amount of crashes in 2011. However, cities such as Sycamore, found that there was actually an increase. A DeKalb Sycamore Area Transportation Study coordinator explained the discrepancies by noting that “the numbers differ mainly because the study uses figures from the Illinois Department of Transportation, which does not include minor property damage accidents or ones that happen on private property.” Also, the respective county departments examined a full calendar year, where as the DSATS examined a fiscal year.
According to the article, looking back at the last five years, there has been an overall decrease in motor vehicle accidents in these counties. Some infer that the decrease could be attributed to the recession because gas prices are high, and people are trying to put fewer miles on their vehicles. Speeding fines, as well as seatbelt fines, could also be a contribution to the decrease.
The DSATS report said that rear-end collisions were the most frequent occurring collision, with turning collisions following in second. One person involved in the report said that key ways to reduce collisions include educating the public, as well as making sure that drivers are aware of traffic regulations and having those traffic regulations enforced.
Some ways to help avoid being involved in a rear-end accident or collision include making sure that your brake lights are always working. Brake lights are crucial in signaling to drivers behind you that you are slowing down or stopping, so they can follow suit. Our Chicago car accident lawyers also encourage checking your rear-view mirror frequently, and making sure that they are properly adjusted. If you can see that someone is tailgating behind you, switch lanes safely or pull over and let them move ahead. Also, to avoid being the tailgater yourself, make sure that you are a safe following distance behind the car, this way if you do have to stop suddenly, you have plenty of room.
Most importantly, focusing on the road can help to avoid all types of accidents. Distractions are a huge factor in most accidents, so when you’re driving, put the cell phone down, and keep your eyes on the road with your hands on the wheel. Our Illinois accident attorneys hope that there will continue to be a decrease in accidents in all counties, and that drivers will work to do whatever they can individually to improve their driving and make the road safer for everyone who uses it.