• Accident Causes

    Snow Hits Chicago Early

    Chicago (October 18, 2022) – Snow has arrived in Chicago earlier than expected, with frosty precipitation landing on October 17. Slick road conditions caused by snow are one of the leading causes of Chicago car accidents. To make sure you and the drivers in your family stay safe during snowy weather, be sure to get your car ready for the winter.

    Lerner and Rowe urges you to study our winter driving safety tips before the snow arrives in full force. A little bit of preparation now can help you stay through the season. If you or someone in your family are injured in an accident due to recklessness during the winter, then contact us for immediate legal assistance. Source: 5Chicago

    IDOT is Planning For Winter Now

    Statewide (September 16, 2022) – Although there are a few more days of summer left, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is already planning for winter. The organization is looking to hire qualified individuals to help with snow and ice removal. IDOT hopes to have enough “snowbird” workers to increase winter driving safety for all Illinois residents.

    As a friendly reminder, Lerner and Rowe reminds you to make sure that your car is ready for winter. Book an appointment now to winterize your car in late November or early December. One of the best ways to avoid a winter car accident is by being prepared for the ice and snow. Source: IDOT

    CPS School Year Starts August 22

    Chicago (August 5, 2022) – The Chicago Public Schools (CPS) school year begins on August 22, 2022. The CPS system has 649 schools that serve more than 340,000 students. As motorists get used to sharing the road with school buses and students, the chances of bicycle accidents, bus accidents, and pedestrian accidents are higher.

    Lerner and Rowe reminds you to drive carefully and slowly in school zones. Be especially mindful of your driving habits during the first few weeks of school as you get used to driving around students. Please follow this guide on how to avoid Chicago school accidents and share it with your friends to maximize everyone’s safety. Source: CPS

    IDOT Issues Flood Warning

    Statewide (July 26, 2022) – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has encouraged Illinois drivers to “turn around don’t drown” in light of heavy rains. Precipitation has been particularly high in Illinois District 8 and has raised the chances of a car accident. IDOT claims that 6 inches of water is enough to knock over a person, while 12 inches is enough to carry away a car.

    Lerner and Rowe echoes IDOT’s advice and urges you to stay home during heavy rain. If you need to go out to pick up a family member or in case of an emergency, please follow our Chicago flood driving safety tips. If you get into a flood-related accident, our team is available to help you 24/7. Source: IDOT

    IDOT Campaign Shows Dangers of Unsafe Driving

    Statewide (June 9, 2022) – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has launched a marketing campaign called “It’s Not a Game.” It’s designed “to reduce injuries and fatalities associated with motorcycles, bicycles, pedestrians, seatbelt use, work zones as well as impaired and distracted driving.” The campaign uses ‘80s-style video game graphics and states that there are “no extra lives, no respawns, and no second chances” when it comes to car accidents.

    According to IDOT, 1,341 people died on Illinois roads in 2021, which was the sixth consecutive year of more than 1,000 traffic fatalities in the state. Lerner and Rowe hopes that initiatives like “It’s Not a Game” helps raise awareness of how serious unsafe driving can be and lower the number of traffic fatalities. Source: IDOT

    Roadside Littering Up, Can Cause Accidents

    Statewide (May 16, 2022) – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) reminds motorists to “Think Before You Throw!” Illinois Transportation Secretary Omer Osman noted, “During the pandemic, we have observed much more littering taking place. We are committed to helping maintain a positive impression of Illinois by keeping roadsides clean, but we can’t do it alone.”

    In addition to environmental damage, roadside littering can lead to an increase in car accidents, particularly ones caused by distracted driving. Lerner and Rowe encourages you to keep your garbage in your car until you can dispose of it properly. Doing so will keep Illinois streets cleaner and safer for everyone. Source: IDOT

    Chicago On Track to Add 100 Miles of Bike Lanes

    Chicago (October 4, 2021) – Aiming to reverse its reputation as one of the least friendly big cities for bicyclists, the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) announced that it’s on track to add 100 miles of new bike lanes. The new lanes are part of the “Chicago Works” improvement plan, which has $17 million slated for bike lane expansion over the next two years.

    By extending and improving Chicago’s network of bike lanes, CDOT aims to add convenience and reduce bicycle accidents. By the end of 2022, CDOT expects to have roughly 400 miles of bike lanes for Chicagoans and visitors to enjoy. Lerner and Rowe hopes that you do what you can to avoid Chicago bike accidents while the project is underway. Source: CDOT

    CDOT to Double Street Lighting

    Chicago (September 8, 2021) – The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) has announced that it is in the process of upgrading the city’s lighting system as part of the Chicago Smart Lighting Program (CSLP). Plans call for improved lighting on 279 blocks in 2021, up from an average of 135 blocks in recent years. The new lighting will improve visibility, which can lower the number of car accidents, pedestrian accidents, and bicycle accidents.

    In addition to increased safety and visibility, the new lighting will save taxpayer money. The new lights use efficient LED bulbs, which use half the electricity of incandescent bulbs and last up to three times longer. Along with upgrading existing lighting fixtures, CDOT expects to install new poles and wiring on 175 residential blocks and on more than 100 blocks on arterial streets. Source: CDOT

    IDOT Seeking Temporary Snow Plow Drivers

    Statewide (August 23, 2021) – According to the US Department of Transportation (USDOT), roughly 24% of weather-related car accidents are caused by snow and conditions created by snow. To help make driving conditions safer during the winter, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is seeking applicants for temporary snow plow drivers. Applications will be accepted starting August 23, 2021.

    If you’re able to drive a snow plow and are looking for some extra cash, please consider applying for these temporary positions. Winter in Illinois can be extreme, so hopefully IDOT finds as many qualified applicants as possible. Although it’s still August, winter will be here before you know it. Be sure to periodically review our Chicago winter driving safety tips so that you’re prepared for snowy roads. Source: IDOT

    Additional Illinois Floods Expected

    Statewide (July 2, 2021) – Several portions of Illinois are under flood warnings, and more rain is expected to hit the state in the next week. With that in mind, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has urged people to use caution while driving in a flood. The agency recommends not driving if possible and is using the slogan, “Turn around, don’t drown” to help people avoid car accidents due to flooding.

    Lerner and Rowe echoes IDOT’s advice. Remember, only a few inches of water are enough to carry your car away and cause significant damage. If you don’t have to drive then enjoy some fun activities at home. If it’s absolutely necessary for you to drive then please follow our tips for driving in a Chicago flood. Source: IDOT

  • Accident Statistics

    Illinois Traffic Fatalities Up 24.4%

    Statewide (August 17, 2021) – Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that Illinois traffic deaths were up 24.4% in Q1 2022 compared to the first three months of 2021. This is much higher than the national average of a 7% increase, which is the same increase regionally. Illinois is part of NHTSA Region 5, which also includes Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, and Ohio and Wisconsin.

    Lerner and Rowe is alarmed by the sharp increase in Illinois car accident deaths. Please make sure that you and the drivers in your household drive safely. Be especially cautious during difficult conditions, such as during flash floods and the winter months. The more people that practice safe driving, the fewer traffic deaths there will be. Source: NHTSA

    CREATE Program to Increase Efficiency by 47%

    Chicago (July 14, 2022) – The Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency (CREATE) Program, a public-private partnership established in 2003, claims that it will improve energy efficiency by 47% by increasing public rail use and efficiency. The program is a series of more than 70 interrelated projects aimed to increase train use, decrease idling emissions, and more. In addition to using less energy, the organization claims that it will increase public safety by lowering the number of Chicago car accidents.

    Additionally, CREATE aims to increase rail use for freight purposes. It claims that increasing the use of trains for the transportation of goods will also lower carbon emissions and the number of Chicago truck accidents. Source: CREATE

    Illinois Traffic Fatalities Down in 2022

    Statewide (June 16, 2022) – The latest figures from the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) show a decrease in car crash fatalities in 2022. The agency reported 487 car accident deaths in 2022 as of this writing, compared to 512 fatalities over the same time period in 2021.

    Lerner and Rowe is thrilled to see a decrease in Illinois car accident fatalities. However, we remind Chicago drivers not to get complacent. Summer is typically the most dangerous season to drive due to increased work zone activity, student drivers out of school, and increased tourism. Please follow our summer driving safety tips to avoid an accident. Source: IDOT

    Pedestrians Are the Most Common Fatality Victims

    Statewide (May 10, 2022) – There have been 386 traffic accident fatalities in Illinois through the first four months of 2022, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT). Pedestrians topped the victims list, with 58 fatalities, followed by semi-truck drivers with 51 deaths.

    Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys urges all motorists to keep an eye out for pedestrians and to treat them with courtesy. Our team also reminds pedestrians to be cautious while walking in areas with heavy traffic. Unfortunately, some drivers fail to spot pedestrians and the results can be catastrophic. Should you get into a personal injury accident of any kind, please contact our Chicago personal injury lawyers immediately. Source: IDOT

    Car Crashes and Fatalities Up in 2021

    Statewide (January 7, 2022) – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has reported its final car accident fatality stats for 2021. Unfortunately, fatal car crashes and total fatalities rose from 2020’s figures. The agency reported 1,200 fatal car accidents in 2021, up from 1,089 in 2020. Overall car crash fatalities rose from 1,196 in 2020 to 1,322 in 2021.

    While a rise in car accident fatalities is always concerning, it’s important to keep in mind that there were more drivers on the road in 2021 than in 2020. Many businesses closed for several months and people restricted travel in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, while Illinois was open for all of 2021. Source: IDOT

    Deer Mating Season Car Crashes

    Statewide (October 15, 2021) – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) wants to remind motorists that deer mating season has begun and will last through the end of November. In 2020, there were 13,787 car accidents in Illinois that involved deer. 43% of those accidents occurred in the last three months of the year. Deer-related crashes resulted in 611 personal injuries and 10 deaths in 2020.

    IDOT is using the slogan of “Don’t Veer For Deer” to help Illinois drivers stay safe during deer mating season. The agency reminds motorists to keep an eye out for deer and slow down if any are spotted nearby. “Please be cautious while on the road as deer are particularly active during the mating season in the fall and during busy driving times around dawn and dusk,” said Illinois Department of Natural Resources Director Colleen Callahan. Source: IDOT

    Chicago One of the Least Bike-Friendly Cities

    Chicago (September 16, 2021) – The non-profit bicycle advocacy group People For Bikes rated Chicago 16 out of 100 for bike friendliness. Compared to other big cities in America, Chicago ranked 99 out of 104. The scores are compiled from the group’s community of bike riders, who rate how accessible each city is for bikers and what the city does to help prevent bicycle accidents.

    Some of the reasons the city was rated so poorly were a lack of “low-stress” bike lanes that make it easier for people to bike to significant destinations, such as grocery stores and schools. Additionally, Chicago has a default motor vehicle speed limit of 30 mph, which makes bicycling more dangerous. Bicycle-friendly cities typically limit speeds within the city to 25 mph. Source: People For Bikes

    Unlicensed Drivers in 15% of 2021 Fatalities

    Statewide (August 19, 2021) – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has reported that unlicensed drivers were involved in 15% of all 2021 car accident fatalities. The agency has reported 727 car crash deaths year to date, with unlicensed drivers accounting for 113 of the victims.

    Some of these drivers have lost their license due to repeated traffic violations. Although it is possible for people without a license to purchase car insurance, there is a higher chance of an unlicensed driver not having it. If you’ve been in an accident caused by an unlicensed, uninsured, or underinsured driver, contact Lerner and Rowe to discuss your legal options. Source: IDOT

    Car Crash Fatalities Up in 2021

    Statewide (July 8, 2021) – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has reported that there have been 566 fatal car accident fatalities through the first six months of 2021. That’s 45 more than the first half of 2020, for an increase just above 8%. However, there were fewer drivers on the road in the first half of 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions.

    Lerner and Rowe hopes that the rest of the year will be safer for Illinois drivers. While an increase in accidents was expected with an increase of drivers, our lawyers encourage you to do your part and follow our summer driving safety tips. By employing strong safety practices and being mindful of other drivers, you can help make the roads safer for everyone. Source: IDOT

    26% of Car Crash Fatalities Due to Improper Seat Belt Use

    Statewide (June 10, 2021) – According to data from the Illinois Department of Transportation, 114 of the 436 fatal car accident victims in 2021 died because of not using or improperly using a seat belt. This accounts for 26% of car crash fatalities this year.

    Lerner and Rowe encourages you to always use your seat belt, whether you’re the driver or passenger. Also make sure that the seat belts in your car are functioning properly and aren’t subject to a safety recall. Wearing a seat belt is required by law, as well as a hugely important aspect of keeping you and your passengers safe while driving. Source: IDOT

  • News

    CDOT Installing Bike Lane Curbs

    Chicago (August 15, 2022) – The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) has installed new “concrete curb protection” along the Kinzie Street bike lane. The concrete curb adds a physical separation between the bike lane and adjacent car lane, which should reduce the number of bicycle accidents.

    Lerner and Rowe is thrilled by CDOT’s continual safety improvements and is excited to see more concrete curb protection throughout Chicago. While the new safety measures will certainly lower Chicago bike accidents, no system is perfect. If you or a loved one were injured in a bike accident caused by another party then contact our Chicago injury attorneys immediately.

    Source: CDOT

    Coal City Driver Claims $12K Work Zone Accident

    Coal City (July 28, 2022) – A local driver filed a $12,000 insurance claim for a construction zone accident on I-57 near Coal City. The driver claims that “a huge chunk of road was in the middle of the one-lane highway” and that the construction crew’s negligence caused him to hit the chunk of road.

    Lerner and Rowe reminds you that work zone activity increases during the summer months. Please exercise caution when driving near or through a work zone in order to avoid a car accident. Should you get into an accident caused by negligent or reckless behavior then contact us immediately. Source: ABC7

    Chicago Announced Connected Community Ordinance

    Chicago (June 22, 2022) – The Chicago Department of Housing (CDOH) has announced the Connected Community Ordinance, as part of the city’s Equitable Transit-Oriented Development (ETOD) plan. Connected Community incentivizes businesses and housing developments to open near transit hubs. In addition to economic growth, improvements to streets and increased use of public transit should lower Chicago car accidents, pedestrian accidents, and more.

    The Chicago personal injury lawyers at Lerner and Rowe applaud the Connected Community Ordinance. In addition to offering new business and residential opportunities, the program should make the streets of Chicago safer for everyone while also expanding access to the unique culture the city has to offer. Source: CDOH

    Divvy Service to Include Scooters

    Chicago (May 24, 2022) – Mayor Lori Lightfoot, the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT), Divvy, and Lyft have announced that electric scooter rentals are coming to Chicago. The scooters will be part of Divvy’s rental service, which has proven to be hugely popular with Chicago residents and tourists. Last year Divvy served more than four-million e-bike rides in Chicago.

    Lyft has already retrofitted over 230 Divvy stations in the downtown Chicago area to accommodate scooters and will add 1,000 dockable scooters by the end of June. Lerner and Rowe reminds you that while e-scooters offer an affordable and convenient way to travel, they can also increase the potential for bicycle accidents, car accidents, and pedestrian accidents. Source: CDOT

    Free COVID-19 Tests Available on January 19

    Statewide (January 17, 2022) – The United States government will provide four free COVID-19 tests per household starting January 19, 2022. People interested in receiving free at-home tests are instructed to go to COVIDtests.gov. The tests and shipping costs will be free.

    In related news, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated its mask guidelines. The agency notes that N95 and KN95 masks offer a higher degree of protection than surgical masks, which are still preferred over cloth masks. No matter what type of mask you wear, it’s important to achieve a good seal for maximum protection. Source: COVIDtests.gov

    La Niña Could Lead to Harsh Chicago Winter

    Chicago (October 21, 2021) – The La Niña weather phenomenon will hit the northern hemisphere for the second year in a row. This could lead to another harsh Chicago winter. La Niña occurs when cooler than average water temperatures are recorded near the equator in the eastern Pacific Ocean, west of South America. For Illinois, this typically results in heavier and more frequent precipitation, with a higher potential for car accidents.

    Lerner and Rowe reminds you to get ready for winter driving. Be sure to prepare your car for the winter and to review our winter driving safety tips. Although it’s only October, frost will possibly build up on the streets as early as this weekend. Source: CBS

    Chicago Sets New Bikeshare Record

    Chicago (September 29, 2021) – The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) has announced that more than four million bicycle rides have been taken on its Divvy bikeshare service in 2021. This is a new record for Divvy, which previously peaked at 3.81 million rides in 2019. The service also set a new single-day record of 36,853 rides on August 14, 2021.

    In addition to offering Chicagoans an inexpensive and convenient way to get around the city, Divvy also helps reduce car accidents by decreasing automobile congestion. However, some bicycle accidents occur, due to inexperienced Divvy riders that are unfamiliar with traffic patterns and bicycle safety. With Chicago’s commitment to improving and expanding bikeways, the city should be better and safer for bicyclists in the near future. Source: CDOT

    CDOT Launches SAFE TV YouTube Show

    Chicago (August 6, 2021) – The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) has released the pilot episode of SAFE TV. The program, which is an extension of the “Streets Are For Everybody” (SAFE) initiative, aims to educate Chicagoans on various aspects of bicycle and pedestrian safety.

    The pilot episode of SAFE TV focuses on bicycle safety. It has segments on Divvy’s bike sharing program, Chicago’s “Learn to Ride” initiative, and how to prepare for emergencies in the event of a bicycle accident.

    By using a modern platform like YouTube, CDOT hopes that SAFE TV will expand the organization’s educational efforts by reaching out to the thousands of Chicagoans that use YouTube. Source: SAFE TV

    Amtrak to Resume Full Service on July 19

    Statewide (July 16, 2021) – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has announced that Amtrak will resume full service of its passenger trains on July 19, 2021. Service was reduced by approximately 50% for more than a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Tickets will be available at stations and online starting July 19 as well.

    Lerner and Rowe is thrilled that Illinois will be getting additional transportation options. However, please be mindful of railroad crossings. Some drivers will be unaccustomed to train crossing interruptions, which can lead to a serious car accident. Should you or a loved one get into an accident at a railroad crossing, please contact us immediately. Source: IDOT

    National Guard Deployed to Rockton Fire

    Rockton (June 16, 2021) – A fire at a Chemtool Inc. factory in Rockton has caused Governor JB Pritzker to call upon the National Guard for support. Local authorities are requiring citizens within a one-mile radius of Chemtool to evacuate the area. Citizens within a two-mile radius of the site are asked to wear masks to avoid the possibility of inhaling harmful particulates.

    Lerner and Rowe urges Rockton residents to follow all government advisories. Chemtool is a grease manufacturer that works with harmful substances like lithium. Chemical fires such as this one can lead to burn injuries, respiratory damage, and wrongful death. Although numerous government agencies are working hard to contain the fire, officials note that it could be days before it’s put out. Source: Illinois.gov