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Peoria Personal Injury Law Blog

What to do when you are in a car accident

Car accidents are a fact of life. No one likes to think about them, but they happen. If you drive enough, it is very likely that you will wind up in at least one at some point during your driving career. The key to handling the situation well and getting back on your feet again is knowing what to do when disaster strikes. That way, you have a plan from the moment of impact, and you also know how to access legal help and other resources to help you recover costs related to the crash.

Drivers report dangerous behavior behind the wheel

Illinois drivers in the 19-to-24 age group may be among the most dangerous drivers although people in all age groups admit to dangerous driving behaviors according to a survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. However, in some cases, millennials were twice as likely as other age groups to say that certain dangerous driving behaviors were acceptable or to engage in those behaviors themselves. For example, 12 percent of millennials versus 5 percent of other age groups said that it was acceptable in a school zone to drive 10 mph above the speed limit.

The study also found that across all age groups, what people believed did not necessarily reflect how they behaved behind the wheel. For example, nearly all the drivers surveyed agreed that going through a red light when they could have stopped was unacceptable. However, 35 percent said in the previous month, they had run a red light. More than 78 percent said that it was unacceptable to read a text or email while driving, but about 40 percent said they had done so in the past month.

Study finds truckers with poor health more apt to crash

Illinois residents who drive a truck for a living or who know someone who does might be interested in a study that showed how the risk of accidents quadruples for commercial truck drivers who have three or more health issues, compared with healthier ones. The study was conducted at the University of Utah School Of Medicine.

Researchers involved in the study took into account several factors regarding commercial truck drivers. Examining the medical records belonging to roughly 50,000 commercial truck drivers, they found that of that amount, more than a third had at least one health problem linked with poor driving skills, including diabetes, lower back pain and heart disease. The researchers then considered the crash history of the truck drivers and learned that those suffering with at least three flagged medical conditions were more prone to have been involved in an accident.

Truck driver training rule delayed

Illinois drivers may be interested in learning that a truck driver training rule that was set to go into effect on Feb. 6 was delayed by the Trump administration. The agency responsible for implementing the rule has postponed its effective date until March 21 so that it could be reviewed, potentially delaying it even further.

The rule would require people applying for commercial driver's licenses, or CDLs, to take a core class curriculum taught by certified trainers listed on a national registry. In addition to the class curriculum, trainees would also have to undergo behind-the-wheel training, though there is no minimum requirement. The first draft of the rule did include a 30-hour minimum, but this provision was removed from the rule's final draft. The national registry would still have to be established, and once it is, trainees would only be able to receive their CDLs by taking classes taught by trainers that are listed on the registry.

Lawsuit asks Apple to add safety locks to iPhones

Illinois residents who have been injured in accidents in which a driver was distracted by a cellphone phone may be interested to learn that a class action lawsuit has been filed against Apple. The plaintiffs are asking Apple to install a safety lock feature in all new iPhones sold in the state of California and to update older phones with the feature. Apple has had the technology since 2008 and patented the safety lock in 2014.

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents. Texting and driving or talking on a phone behind the wheel without a hands-free device is illegal in most states but hard to enforce. Drivers may not be truthful about their cellphone habits, and it may be difficult to detect when a person is using a smartphone or other devices while driving. An officer must obtain a warrant to check a phone to see if a driver was using it at the time of the accident, and this process can be time-consuming.

1 dead, 3 injured in head-on collision

On Jan. 23, it was reported that a car accident left one person dead and three others injured. According to the Illinois State Police, the crash took place on U.S. 150 at about 1:52 p.m. just two miles from the Illinois-Indiana border.

A 39-year-old woman was traveling west on U.S. 150 in a 2013 Chrysler when she crossed the center line. Authorities did not know what caused the driver to cross into oncoming traffic. The Chrysler collided head-on with a 2009 Chrysler minivan that was heading east. The 78-year-old female driver of the minivan was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. Two children who were in the minivan, ages 6 and 15, were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment of their injuries. Authorities stated that the 39-year-old driver was also treated for injuries at a nearby hospital.

Single-vehicle crash kills 3 passengers

A single-vehicle car accident that occurred on Jan. 17 left three Illinois residents dead and one person with serious injuries. The accident occurred on the Eisenhower Expressway near Western Avenue in Chicago at about 2:15 a.m.

Illinois State Police said that a 2012 Buick was traveling west when the driver lost control, causing the vehicle to leave the road. It traveled up the embankment and then collided with a utility pole. Investigators stated that alcohol may have been a factor in the accident. The crash caused all outbound lanes to be closed, though they were reopened several hours later.

Illinois' Deadliest And Least Deadly Driving Counties

When it comes to driving, what are the most dangerous counties in Illinois? What are the safest? The answers to these questions may surprise you.

Auto Insurance Center, is a website operated by several insurance companies. This industry group has gathered statistics concerning fatal traffic accidents from every county in the U.S. over the last 20 years.

Its most recent analysis shows that overall, Illinois ranks as one of the safer states in the country. In fact, in terms of fatal accidents, it is safer than all of the states bordering Illinois. Over the 20-year period studied, Illinois had 17.86 fatal accidents per 10,000 people. This compares to Indiana with 24.06 fatal accidents, Wisconsin with 22.17, Iowa with 24.48, Missouri with 30.86, and Kentucky with 34.28 fatal accidents per 10,000 people.

Pursuing civil remedies after a swimming pool accident

Swimming pool accidents claim the lives of about 1,000 children each year, and thousands more are left with injuries ranging from contusions and broken bones to permanent paralysis and brain damage. Some of these accidents take place at public facilities or business locations that feature swimming pools like hotels or health clubs, and many more occur at private residences across the state. If you or a loved one has suffered injuries caused by the negligent actions of an Illinois swimming pool owner or manager, you may wish to consult with an attorney who has experience with these sometimes complex and challenging cases.

Swimming pool safety is addressed by a number of state and federal laws. The owners of public pools are required to place certain warning signs and are expected to take steps to ensure that their visitors are safe, and homeowners in Illinois who install a backyard pool are required to enclose it with a fence or wall of at least 42 inches in height. If you pursue civil remedies after a swimming pool accident, your attorneys may begin their investigations by scrutinizing the pool in question to see if any of these regulations have been ignored.

Recent Illinois Supreme Court Decision Clarifies Illinois Snow and Ice Removal Act

On December 1, 2016, the Illinois Supreme Court issued its opinion in the case of Pamela Murphy-Hylton v. Lieberman Management Services, Inc., et al., 2016 IL 120394. The case arises out of a claim by the Plaintiff, Pamela Murphy-Hylton, that she slipped and was injured while walking on the sidewalk outside her condominium. Ms. Murphy-Hylton alleged that a defective condition and negligent maintenance of the property created an "unnatural accumulation of ice" that caused her to fall. The trial court initially granted judgment in favor of the Defendants, Lieberman Management Services, Inc. and Klein Creek Condominium finding that the Illinois Snow and Ice Removal Act (745 ILCS 75/0.01) provided protection and immunity to the defendants. On appeal, the judgment was reversed. The matter was appealed to the Illinois Supreme Court, who has agreed with the appellate court.

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