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IL injury lawyerPosttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that is typically triggered as a victim or a witness of a devastating event. Symptoms can range from flashbacks to nightmares, and even debilitating anxiety. Although many people who suffer from PTSD have been involved in vehicle accidents or are victims of violent crimes, long-term care or assisted living residents can also develop PTSD over time. Nursing home abuse and neglect can leave a lasting effect on a patient, even leading to suicidal thoughts in some cases. A personal injury attorney can determine liability and hold negligent parties accountable for mental injuries such as PTSD.

Holding Liable Parties Accountable for Mental Injuries

When your relative reaches a point where they cannot live on their own, you entrust medical professionals and staff members to take care of them. Sadly, this is not always the case. A few of the ways that staff members can cause a patient to suffer from PTSD include performing the following acts:

  • Hitting, striking, slapping
  • Sexual harassment
  • Sexual assault
  • Berating, demeaning, criticizing
  • Neglecting to provide adequate nutrition by withholding food or water
  • Failure to assist with basic hygiene care
  • Stealing money from a resident

Elder abuse is often underreported in long-term care facilities such as nursing homes. In some cases, abuse and neglect occur because workers are understaffed and overworked. In other instances, nursing homes may fail to properly vet staff members and hire someone without doing a criminal background check, resulting in employing someone who has a history of abuse charges or convictions against them.

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IL truck accident lawyer width=Motor vehicle accidents can occur for various reasons, including inclement weather conditions, driver error, or mechanical failure. Although many of today’s cars and trucks have advanced technology aimed to prevent a crash, they may still happen, often resulting in serious and even fatal injuries. Certain in-car devices and systems can help in determining how or why a collision took place. In addition, other video footage near the scene or witnesses can provide crucial data regarding the events that led up to the incident. Gathering this important information can be essential when proving negligence and seeking damages in a truck accident.

Event Data Recorders

Event data recorders can include many different types of devices. According to the NHTSA, an EDR is a device that is installed in an automobile or a truck that records technical information (vehicle and occupant) for the seconds before, during, and after an accident. Part of an EDR’s recorded data reports on how and where a vehicle was driven. This may include speed, braking, steering, and more. Most EDRs can only store recorded data for a certain amount of time, so it is crucial to obtain it as soon as possible following an accident to increase the chances of receiving compensation if it shows that a truck driver acted negligently.

EDRs may record critical data, including any of the following:

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IL injury lawyerWintertime can be fun for fans of winter sports, such as skiing, ice skating, and sledding. However, these sports are not without their risks. In Illinois, the temperatures can be extreme, including sub-zero days. Blizzard-like conditions may also bring heavy snow, sleet, and ice. Even just walking outside can be hazardous under some circumstances. When precipitation freezes, it creates slippery surfaces on pavement, wooden stairs, or decks. These areas can include private homes or public places such as restaurants, office buildings, or stores. If patrons, guests, or visitors slip and fall on slick walkways, they can sustain serious to life-threatening injuries. If you were hurt in this way, an experienced attorney can help you hold a negligent property owner or manager accountable.

Significant Injuries

Trying to walk in deep snow can be difficult, causing pedestrians to lose their balance. In addition, walking on ice may make a person slip and fall, landing on a hard surface. The sudden force of the impact can lead to debilitating consequences, requiring hospitalization, surgery, rehabilitation, or assistive care.

A few of the most severe injuries from falling on ice or snow include:

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IL injury lawyerThe global pandemic that is COVID-19 has impacted many aspects of our lives this past year. Non-essential businesses have been temporarily closed throughout the country in efforts to stop the spread of the virus. Numerous essential employees who work in the corporate world have found themselves working remotely at home. The majority of people have been spending most of the past year at home. Although the roads are less crowded than they normally are, the rates of fatal car accidents have gone up.

According to reports from Top Driver, the fatality rate per mile driven increased despite many Illinois residents driving less due to stay-at-home orders. In the Chicago area, there has been a 14 percent increase in speeding, part of a dangerous trend of driving behavior during the coronavirus crisis. One reason for these statistics is due to the fact that some motorists feel as if they can speed now that there is not much traffic on their usual routes, including Interstates 90 and 294. However, traveling at faster speeds can increase the severity of injuries in the event of a collision.

 Speed Limits Are Established for a Reason

Speed limit signs are posted along roadways to alert drivers to the maximum speed they are allowed to travel on that roadway. Speed limits are designed to enhance safety by reducing the risk of a driver losing control and colliding with another vehicle, object, or pedestrian. School and construction zones are established to prevent speeding near a school since children are walking nearby and getting on and off school buses. Traffic fines are increased if drivers are found speeding in these areas. In addition, curvy or winding streets typically have slower speed limits to prevent motorists from taking turns too fast and flipping over.

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IL injury lawyerAnyone who lives in the Midwest knows how brutal the winters can be. Illinois residents in particular have likely experienced blizzards that dumped several feet of snow in relatively short periods of time. Along with snow comes wind, ice, slush, and sleet during the winter months. Although tripping or slipping and falling outside can occur at any time, the likelihood of this type of accident is usually higher in bad weather. Just as it can be dangerous driving during a snowstorm, walking outdoors can pose its own risks, too. However, Mother Nature may not be the only one to blame. In some cases, any injuries suffered may be due to the negligence of a property owner.

Cold-Weather Maintenance

Inclement weather can wreak havoc on road pavement. That is why the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) sends fleets of snowplows out during snowy days and nights. Clearing streets is crucial to prevent cars from sliding and drivers losing control and colliding with other vehicles or even pedestrians. Likewise, it is imperative that property owners take the necessary precautions during the winter months in order to keep their guests or visitors safe. This may include plowing parking lots, shoveling sidewalks, putting salt down on icy walkways, and more. If they do not perform this type of maintenance, they may be held liable for any injuries suffered on their grounds.

Another safety and security measure that all building managers or property owners should take is replacing any broken or burnt-out lightbulbs that illuminate their grounds. Since it gets darker earlier in the winter, it can be difficult for patrons to see where they are going, causing them to slip on ice or fall in a pothole. Additionally, burst pipes can cause a flood, resulting in frozen water throughout a public area where people might be walking. Falls on icy concrete can range from minor bumps and bruises to severe head trauma and broken bones.

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IL accident lawyerMotor vehicle collisions occur for many reasons, such as speeding, disobeying traffic laws, driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol, distracted driving, inclement weather, or poor road conditions. Determining liability in a car accident may not be as easy as it seems. In some cases, an objective third party can help establish who was responsible for causing the accident and who should pay for medical expenses related to any injuries. Accident reconstruction can assist with determining liability in a vehicle crash. In addition, a knowledgeable personal injury attorney can hold those negligent parties responsible.

Examining Evidence at the Scene

In some accidents, there may be multiple vehicles involved, which can make it difficult to identify the at-fault driver. For example, if one motorist loses control of his or her car, it can cause a chain reaction, in which several vehicles hit each other, resulting in a multi-vehicle pileup. Injuries to drivers and occupants can range from minor to serious and even fatal.

An accident reconstructionist is a professional with extensive knowledge of physics and engineering as it relates to a crash scene. He or she may also have a law enforcement background with specialized training. Reconstructing the accident can reveal factors that led up to a collision, including weather and pavement conditions, visibility, as well as the vehicles’ speeds. These professionals will conduct their investigation starting with the final resting place of the vehicles. However, they will look at all pieces of evidence including damage to the vehicles and the passengers.

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IL injury lawyerYou may have heard that raising children “takes a village.” That saying often refers to the fact that parenting is hard work and parents sometimes rely on the help of others in caring for their family. If both parents work, they typically need to find childcare. This can come in the form of relatives, neighborhood friends, private caregivers, or daycare centers. Workers at a daycare center typically must go through a background check before being hired. This process reveals important information by verifying that an individual is who they claim to be, level of education, employment history, and if they have a criminal record. A background check helps ensure that an employee is not only qualified but trustworthy as well, which can protect children who are in their care. Sadly, accidents or abuse may still occur, but a personal injury attorney can help parents pursue compensation if their child was harmed at a daycare center.

History Can Repeat Itself

A comprehensive background check must include a fingerprint check of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) database to ensure that the daycare provider does not have a history of convictions that could potentially put a child’s health and safety at risk. As an example, a person who has anger management issues with a previous arrest for assault may be likely to repeat that behavior again. In some situations, if an unstable worker becomes frustrated, he or she may take it out on the children under his or her care. Similarly, an individual who has a substance abuse problem may come to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol, negatively affecting his or her reaction time or judgment, causing a child to suffer an injury under his or her watch.

Certain background checks for employment can reveal criminal offenses at the county, state, and federal levels. A few of the types of crimes that may be uncovered include:

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IL injury lawyerThere comes a point in some people’s lives where they can no longer care for themselves. In these situations, many elderly individuals move to a nursing home or assisted living facility. In order to provide high-quality care, these long-term care centers must adhere to certain safety standards. However, not all of them may follow the required regulations, and these violations can lead to accidents and injuries among patients. According to ProPublica and the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, hazardous conditions are the most common violation in nursing homes across the country. Other violations can also result in negligent care and endanger residents.

Common Hazards That Cause Harm

Any type of medical facility has a duty of care to keep patients safe and secure while under their care. This includes maintaining clean and sanitary conditions, but it also involves building maintenance to make sure it is a safe environment regardless if a resident is mobile, confined to a wheelchair, or bedridden.

Some of the most common dangerous conditions found in nursing homes, rehabilitation, or assisted-living homes may cause an individual to slip, trip, and fall. In other instances, building code violations can result in severe burns or electrocution due to exposed electrical currents. They may include but are not limited to the following:

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IL accident lawyerIt is fairly common to be cruising along an Illinois highway, going a few miles per hour over the speed limit, only to be passed by an out of control, fast-moving vehicle. Despite posted speed limit signs, many Illinois drivers significantly pick up their speed as soon as they hit the highway. Without frequent stop signs or signals to keep them at bay, these drivers can weave in and out of lanes as they seemingly glide past the other cars on the road. These speedy drivers often feel on top of the world, only to find themselves the cause of a life-threatening accident an instant later. Despite a promising six percent drop in speeding-related deaths in 2018, a total of 9,378 people still lost their lives to this driving hazard, many of which were victims of other drivers’ speeding tendencies.

A September Speeding Accident

This past September, a six-vehicle crash left one person dead and at least three others injured on I-294. According to an ABC7 report, a Chevy Impala was allegedly driving at a high speed in the southbound lane when it lost control and swiped a car in the next lane over. The Impala then went airborne over the highway barrier, striking three other cars in the process. One of the injured passengers—a 64-year-old woman driving a Honda CRV—died after being transported to a nearby hospital, and four others suffered both major and minor injuries.

What Are the Consequences of Speeding?

According to data retrieved by the National Safety Council, those between the ages of 15 and 20 years old have the highest percentage of speeding drivers in fatal crashes, with males showing a higher tendency to speed. Because younger drivers have less driving experience and a higher tendency to speed, they are the ones who often experience these consequences first-hand. Driving over the speed limit is considered breaking the law, and depending on how fast the driver was moving among other circumstances, their penalties can range from a minor ticket to time behind bars. Aside from the legal repercussions that speeding drivers can face, there are a number of consequences that driving at high speeds can have on the driver and those around them, including the following:

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IL crash lawyerIf you are involved in any type of car accident, it has the potential to wreak havoc on your life. For instance, you may have the inconvenience of finding yourself suddenly without transportation and having to rent a vehicle while yours is in the repair shop to get to and from your job. In other scenarios, you can suffer serious injuries that require surgery or physical therapy to recover. Rear-end and head-on collisions can cause severe damages, and so can side-impact crashes, which are often referred to as “T-bone” accidents. These types of collisions can result in life-threatening to even fatal consequences even when traveling at slow speeds due to the location of the impact. In many cases, another driver may be held liable for causing a side-impact car accident due to his or her negligence.

T-Bone Crash Injuries

The most common body parts that victims of side-impact crashes hurt are the chest, head, abdomen, and pelvis. Since the impact of T-bone crashes occurs in close proximity to the driver or passenger, the impact can jerk the body around at a force strong enough to cause internal organ damage. In certain cases, signs and symptoms may be immediately noticeable, while it may take days or weeks to feel the full effect of an injury.

Here are typical injuries that occupants suffer when the vehicle in which they are riding is struck on the side:

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Il injury lawyerStatistics show that people are living longer in these modern times. However, this means many elderly citizens reside in assisted living or nursing homes once they reach a point in which they cannot live independently. Medical professionals at such facilities have a duty of care to keep your loved one safe and healthy. Unfortunately, cases of injuries sustained by residents due to abusive or neglectful behavior by staff members occur more often than you might think. Several reasons may exist for this, including understaffing or inadequate training by management. Regardless of the causes, if your family member has suffered any kind of injury while living in a long-term care facility, he or she may be entitled to compensation through a personal injury claim. A knowledgeable attorney can help you recognize the signs of nursing home abuse or neglect.

Physical Injuries

The mistreatment of nursing home patients or assisted living residents may be difficult to notice at first. If someone is bed-ridden, visiting relatives may not initially see signs or symptoms of abuse or neglect. For example, bruises or bedsores may be covered by clothing or blankets. When medical staff fail to do rounds or to check on residents or bathe them on a regular basis, they can develop serious to life-threatening infections.

Examples of the most common injuries that are found in long-term care facilities include:

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IL accident lawyerAlthough nobody expects to be involved in a car accident when they get into their vehicle, crashes can occur for many reasons. In some cases, inclement weather and a negligent driver who is going too fast may cause a collision with one or more vehicles. Illinois drivers need to pay attention in order to avoid becoming a statistic. The Chicago-area roadways include Interstates 294 and 90, which are busy with residents traveling in and out of the city. Traffic is typically heavy, although with COVID-19 restrictions in place, many area residents are working from home. However, the state has seen an increase in motor vehicle fatalities due to reckless driving behaviors. In certain situations, a driver may leave the scene of an accident in an attempt to avoid a traffic violation. A skilled personal injury attorney can help you pursue damages if you or your loved one is the victim of a hit-and-run accident.

Dealing with the Aftermath of a Hit-and-Run

It is important for anyone involved in an automobile accident to remain at the scene until first responders arrive. Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) will assess injuries and provide immediate medical attention to any passengers who are hurt. Police can make an official report of the crash, which is necessary for insurance purposes.

Failure to stop after an accident, help anyone who is injured, and exchange contact information with other drivers is illegal in Illinois. An experienced attorney can work with you to find information that may help in identifying the driver who fled the scene. This may include the following items:

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IL injury lawyerThere is no denying that an argument between two people may escalate to violence when alcohol is involved. These types of physical altercations can take place between spouses or family members in private, such as someone’s home. In other scenarios, they can occur in public places between strangers, such as at a bar or a restaurant. A simple misunderstanding can turn violent if individuals are intoxicated or impaired after drinking too much. Typically, a person is liable for injuries if he or she assaults another person. However, if a dining establishment intentionally over-serves a patron who is already clearly intoxicated, then they too could also be liable for injuries suffered in a bar fight under the Illinois Dram Shop Act.

Physical and Psychological Damage

Any traumatic event that results in harm, such as a car accident or an attack, can lead to both physical and emotional damage to the victim. Suffering injuries after being punched, kicked, or attacked in any way can make someone very anxious or fearful of going out again, especially if the incident occurred at a public place.

A few of the most common types of injuries suffered in a bar fight include:

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IL accident lawyerStudies from the National Safety Council (NSC) have reported some surprising news regarding car accidents. Fatalities from motor vehicle collisions increased 11 percent in the first quarter of the year in Illinois despite the fact that was when stay-at-home orders went into effect due to COVID-19. Although some restrictions have been lifted, many people are still working from home so the roads are significantly less congested than they typically would be during the summer months. Unfortunately, many drivers are taking to these open roads with a blatant disregard for traffic laws. Reckless driving has been a major concern for safety experts since the statistics show a jump in serious injuries and fatalities.

Dangerous Driving Behaviors

There are many actions behind the wheel that can be cause for concern. Negligent driving behavior seems to have increased on the empty roads. The reason for this may be the fact that motorists have a false sense of safety or security since there is not much traffic on the streets today. They might think that it is OK to speed or that law enforcement is busy with other duties and not out patrolling the somewhat deserted highways.

Distracted driving may also be a contributing factor to the rise in vehicle fatalities during the pandemic. Since there are fewer cars on the road, motorists may believe that it is safe to text while driving. However, even glancing at a phone for a few seconds greatly reduces a driver’s reaction time, which could result in a rear-end collision if a car ahead suddenly stops and he or she cannot stop in time. In other cases, a driver may simply be worried or concerned if a family member is sick with the virus, which can contribute to distracted driving.

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IL injury lawyerThere are many different ways that someone can get hurt. Accidents can occur in various environments, including the home, public places such as parks, restaurants, or stores. Injuries can range from minor bumps and bruises to serious and even life-threatening conditions. In some cases, they can affect the rest of someone’s life. Slip-and-fall accidents might not sound like they would be that severe, but they can cause significant injuries to people of all ages. Although they are fairly common in inclement weather, especially in snowy or icy conditions, slip-and-falls can also occur in warm weather. Property owners have a responsibility to properly maintain their buildings and grounds; otherwise, visitors may suffer injuries.

Premises Liability Act

According to the Illinois Premises Liability Act, business and property owners have a duty to keep their premises safe and secure in order to prevent guests from any harm. If owners or managers fail to take reasonable care to maintain the property, they may be held accountable for damages that occur as a result. However, this law does not apply to individuals who are trespassing and get hurt on the property.

Injuries that are a result of the negligence of a property owner can be due to damaged sidewalks, staircases, hand railings, faulty elevators, or poorly maintained swimming pools. We all know that slipping on ice in the winter can be a common occurrence. However, swimming pool surfaces can be extremely slick due to all the water that splashes from the pool. In addition, restaurant floors or patios can be slippery if drinks or food spills and they are not cleaned up by staff members in a timely manner. In other cases, rotted wood can break apart, causing patrons or visitors to lose their footing or balance and fall.

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IL injury attorneyThere are many working parents in the United States. Finding child care options can be a daunting task, since parents are entrusting their child’s well-being with someone else. That is why it is important to find licensed facilities to ensure your child’s safety. Bruises, cuts, or scrapes can be the result of typical childhood roughhousing. However, not all injuries are unintentional, and they could be an indication of a serious accident. They can be caused by negligence or even abuse on behalf of a childcare provider. In Illinois, the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) issues licenses to daycare centers to make sure they meet a set of standards for care. When these standards are not met, parents may be entitled to a personal injury claim if their child suffered while in their care.

Negligent Actions Can Lead to Tragic Accidents

Most children who go to a daycare center are typically there for eight or more hours if their parents work full time. This means they may eat, drink, and nap at the facility. An appropriate number of adults to kids ratio must be met to ensure proper supervision. Unfortunately, inadequate staff or maintenance are a few of the reasons that many accidents occur at childcare facilities. In other instances, failure to perform a thorough background check on employees may mean staff members who are not trained or qualified to care for infants or toddlers.

A few of the leading causes of accidents and the resulting injuries that children can sustain while at a daycare facility include:

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IL accident lawyerDue to the COVID-19 pandemic, most eating establishments were closed except for takeout or drive-thru service. This was done to help prevent the highly contagious virus from spreading. The good news is that restaurants throughout the state of Illinois are now opening up for dining outside on patios or spaced apart inside the establishments. After being under a stay-at-home order for the past several months, many Illinois residents are flocking to their favorite restaurant or bar for a night out. However, a fun outing can have an unexpected outcome if an accident occurs. There are several ways that a dining patrol can be injured. In the majority of cases, a negligent owner or operator may be to blame. That is why it is essential that you consult with a skilled personal injury attorney to learn your options for seeking damages.

Types of Accidents That Can Occur at a Restaurant

Some of the most common injuries sustained at a restaurant are the result of slip and fall accidents. Slippery surfaces can cause patrons to slide and lose their balance. Similarly, customers may trip on debris or objects on sidewalks or aisles. The causes of these conditions can include the following:

  • Spilled food or liquid on flooring or hand railings
  • Uneven pavement
  • Poorly lit parking lots

Under the Illinois Premises Liability Act, all property owners in Illinois are responsible for keeping their premises clean and safe for those who visit, or at least provide a warning if they cannot keep the area free from hazards. Restaurant and bar owners or managers can be held accountable for injuries that occur within the dining area in addition to the walkways, patio, and parking lot. In order to prove negligence, accident victims will need to show that the restaurant created the hazard, knew of the hazard, or should have known of the hazard. These rules do not apply to people who are trespassing.

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Il defense lawyerChicago and its surrounding suburbs are notorious for heavy traffic. I-294 and I-90 are some of the most traveled tollways because of their convenience for getting into and out of the city, as well as from the south suburbs to the north shore. However, the roads are not as congested these days due to the governor’s stay-at-home order in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Even with fewer vehicles out and about, there is still the risk of car accidents with injuries. Recent reports have shown an increase in traffic violations, such as speeding. In some cases, drivers may not obey the traffic laws since the roads are emptier than normal. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), almost one-third of all motor vehicle accidents are rear-end collisions.

Negligent Behavior

Many actions can cause a car accident. One of the most common reasons for a rear-end crash involves a driver following the car ahead of him or her too closely, which does not allow adequate time to stop before colliding. This is especially true in bad weather, such as snow or icy conditions. However, there are other behaviors that can increase the chances of a crash. Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol greatly impairs a motorist’s judgment and reduces his or her reflexes and reaction time.

Some of the main factors that lead to a rear-impact collision include:

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IL boat accident lawyerMay is National Water Safety Month. Now that the weather is finally getting warmer in Illinois, many people are getting their boats ready to hit the water. These types of watercraft may include fishing, speed, pontoon, sailboats and even yachts. The Illinois Boating Education Certificate is also referred to as the Illinois Boating License. This document is proof that a person has met the mandatory boat safety education requirements for the state. However, even when all safety precautions are taken, just like vehicle collisions, a boating accident can occur, resulting in minor to serious and even fatal injuries. According to a report by the U.S. Coast Guard, there were approximately 2,500 recreational boating injuries and 633 boating fatalities in the United States in 2018. In some cases, the reckless or negligent behavior of another boater may be to blame for a boating accident.

Factors the Lead to Danger on the Water

There are many potential distractions onboard a boat, especially when there are many passengers in a party-like atmosphere. Operators of boats are expected to stay sober and alert while paying attention to their surroundings. Ignoring navigational rules on the water is considered a blatant disregard for safety. In addition, the wind, weather, and water can be unpredictable, requiring drivers to recognize early warning signs of hazards.

A few of the most common causes of a boating accident include:

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IL injury lawyerApril is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. National campaigns aimed at reducing the number of distracted driving incidents have recognized the seriousness of the issue. Distracted driving is defined as engaging in other activities that take the driver’s attention away from the road. This type of behavior behind the wheel has been shown to compromise the safety of the driver, passengers, pedestrians, as well as other motorists. According to the Illinois State Police, driver inattention is a factor in over one million car accidents in the United States each year.

Types of Distraction

There are three main types of distraction when it comes to driving:

  • Visual: Driver takes his or her eyes off the road
  • Manual: Driver takes his or her hands off the wheel
  • Cognitive: Driver takes his or her mind off of driving

Studies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that when traveling at 55 mph, reading or sending a text message takes your eyes off the road for approximately five seconds, which is long enough for a car to cover the length of a football field. In these situations, it greatly reduces the driver’s stopping distance in the event the driver in front suddenly slows down or comes to a complete stop.

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