Summer in Chicago is a fun and exciting time. Most Midwesterners can agree that the summer months are some of the more enjoyable times of the year. What many fail to realize is that this time of the year is often the most dangerous on the roads. While we're used to the snow and ice and hazardous winter driving that Illinois has to offer, the summer months can be even more dangerous. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, June and July had the highest numbers of teenage crash deaths of any months in 2012. Initially, it may be hard to understand, but the Chicago auto accident attorneys are here to explain a few different reasons of why car accidents are on the rise in the summer months.
Vacations and Holidays
The roads are busy with people traveling during the summer on family vacation or holiday trips. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the most traffic deaths occur on the July 4th holiday, than any other day, with July 3rd being the second worst statistically.
Inexperienced drivers are out of school and driving around more during the summertime. With free time to spare and a set of keys at their disposal, more teens are on the road when school isn't in session.
Increase in Cyclists
Bicyclists and motor cyclists enjoy riding during the summertime. They're not as easily spotted on busy Illinois roadways, nor are they as protected as automobile drivers. As a result they're more vulnerable to fatal accidents.
Illinois winters are too cold for the majority of the necessary construction work, so most of the time road construction takes place during the summer. This means more detours, narrow roadways, construction workers present and a bigger chance of getting into a construction accident.
There is an increase in alcohol consumption during the summer from festivals, parties and holiday weekends. As blood alcohol levels rise, inhibitions and safety concerns fall. 34% of all total traffic deaths in Illinois in 2012 were drunk driving fatalities. While driving drunk is a year-round issue in Illinois, the summer months are of particular concern.
As the roads fill up during the summer, it important to remember that there are ways to help protect and prevent fatal car, truck and motorcycle auto accidents. Before you hit the roads this summer, keep these safety tips from Lipkin & Apter' auto accident attorneys in mind:
- Talk to the teens in your life about safe driving.
- Never drive if you've been drinking. If you are going to a party and you plan on leaving, make sure to designate a sober driver, or set up overnight arrangements so you do not put yourself or others at risk on the road.
- Be cognizant of increased traffic and drive defensively.
- Always watch for bicycle and motorcycle riders, share the road!
- Turn off your cellphone. Illinois bans cell phone use, including texting and driving for all drivers. If you are a distracted driver, store it away until you've reached your destination.
- Pay attention to construction zones and respect work zone speed limits and construction worker's safety.
- Check your vehicles oils, gas and tires before heading out on the road.
- Make sure to get the proper sleep before long driving trips.
- If you're in the car always use proper safety devices like car seats and seat belts.
If you've been injured in an auto accident, contact our Chicago personal injury lawyers. Lipkin & Apter invites you to schedule your free consultation with our experienced team to put our years of experience to work for you.