Abels & Annes

NHTSA Releases New 2010 Data for Car Accidents in Illinois and Elsewhere

The number of car accidents in Chicago and elsewhere throughout the state has increased from 2009 to 2010. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released new statistics that conclude that 2010 was another positive trend in the overall reduction in fatal traffic accidents — fewer deadly accidents were reported in the United States than at any time since 1949.
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“While we have more work to do to continue to protect American motorists, these numbers show we’re making historic progress when it comes to improving safety on our nation’s roadways,” said Secretary LaHood.

Chicago car accident attorneys know that a lot of traffic accident scenarios did in fact decrease from 2009 to 2010. But the truth of the matter is that a number of accident scenarios did in fact increase, including those in Illinois. Fatalities among motorcycle riders, large truck occupants and pedestrians also increased during 2010.

Included in the newly released report from the NHTSA is a new feature that measures the number of distraction-related accidents. In 2010, there were nearly 3,100 fatalities resulting from these types of accidents. There were more than 1,500,000 injury accidents. Distraction-related accidents include drivers that weren’t paying attention because they were eating, smoking, playing with the radio, talking on the phone, sending a text message, reading, applying makeup, reading a map, surfing the web, etc.

In 2010, the total number of traffic accident fatalities in the United States reached 33,000. During the year, more than 30 percent of the fatalities were the result of alcohol-related accidents. These types of accidents continue to be alarmingly high despite all of the drunk driving prevention programs throughout the nation.

Although more accidents happened in rural areas in the U.S., the number of these accidents actually decreased from 2009 to 2010. The number of urban accidents experienced an increase.

Throughout the year, a majority of the fatal accidents took place at nighttime, or from 6:00 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.

As we stated before, the number of motorcyclist fatalities increased. Fatalities among riders over the age of 50 increase be nearly 120 while the number of fatalities for those under the age of 50 decreased by more than 80.

Illinois wasn’t lucky enough to be one of the states that experienced a decrease in the number of traffic fatalities from 2009 to 2010. In 2009, we experienced approximately 910 fatalities, while in 2010 we experienced nearly 930 accident fatalities. This is an increase of more than 5 percent.

As technology advances, transportation officials are learning how to better track distraction-related accidents. Still, the most common accident-causing distraction was drivers engaging in conversation with other passengers, followed by playing with the radio. With cell phones, GPS devices, palm pilots and smart phones, government officials have a whole new genre of distractions to worry about; the search for effective ways to reduce these accidents continues.

While yes, some types of accidents did in fact decrease, we think it’s important to point out that many others experienced an increase and the number of fatalities in our state increased. Drivers are urged to keep fighting for safe roadways. Keep attention on the road and follow driving laws. Driver attention is the one of the ways we can help to decrease these numbers.

If you, a friend or a family member has been injured in a car accident, the personal injury attorneys and wrongful death lawyers at Abels & Annes offer free and confidential appointments to discuss your rights. Call (866) 99-ABELS. There is no fee unless you win.

More Blog Entries:

MADD Teams Up With NFL to Reduce Risks of Teen Car Accidents in Chicago and Elsewhere, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, December 7, 2011

Elderly Drivers Face Increased Risks for Car Accident in Chicago over Holidays, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, December 5, 2011