• Accident Causes

    Nine DUI Arrests in Three Days

    Arlington Heights (August 15, 2019) – From July 13 to 15, Arlington Heights police officers charged nine people with driving under the influence (DUI). Each of the nine charges were from separate incidents. This was an unusually high number of DUI arrests for a relatively small Chicago suburb. The state reported 330 deaths in alcohol-related crashes in 2017, which was approximately 30 percent of the total traffic fatalities that year.

    The lawyers at Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys encourage you to avoid driving under the influence at all costs. Driving while intoxicated puts you, your passengers, and other drivers in potentially grave peril. Additionally, being charged with a DUI may have a serious impact on your everyday lifestyle, should your license be suspended. Please use taxis, rideshare services, designated drivers, or public transportation if there’s even the slightest chance that you’ll be too inebriated to drive. Source: Chicago Tribune

    Electric Scooter Boom Leads to More Accidents

    Chicago (July 22, 2019) – Electric scooter popularity is soaring, both in terms of purchases and rental services. There are currently 10 “dockless scooter” companies operating in Chicago, giving people more options to move around the city easily. Unfortunately, some scooter riders are uncourteous, while some motorists and bicyclists resent the burgeoning popularity of scooters and take their frustrations out on scooter riders.

    Recently, a scooter rider was driving the wrong way down a one-way street. The scooter rider hit and seriously injured a bicyclist, and fled the scene. Another incident had a bicyclist purposely push a scooter rider and then fled the scene. The scooter rider dislocated his shoulder and broke numerous bones.

    While it’s fantastic that Chicagoans have a quick and convenient way to get around the city, scooters have also introduced more ways to get into an accident. If you’ve been involved in a bicycle, scooter, or hit-and-run accident, please contact Lerner and Rowe immediately. Source: StreetsBlog

    CTA Green Line Derailment Injures Seven

    Chicago (June 6, 2019) – Taking the Chicago Transit Authority’s (CTA) Loop is one of the safest ways to travel in the city. However, there are rare instances of train accidents that have lead to injury and death. In early June, a Green Line train derailed, injuring seven people. The biggest accident in the Loop’s history occurred in 1977, when four cars derailed at the Randolph/Wabash station; eleven people died in that catastrophe.

    Loop accidents happen for a variety of reasons. Electric failures, impaired train operators, and mechanical issues with the tracks have caused train accidents in Chicago. If you or your family have been involved in a Loop accident, contact the personal injury attorneys at Lerner and Rowe immediately. We’re ready to fight to get you just compensation for your pain, suffering, and injuries. Source: CBS

    New Laws Aim to Curb Distracted Driving Crashes

    Statewide (May 15, 2019) – Illinois enacted new distracted driving laws at the start of 2019 in order to curb accidents caused by people not paying attention to the road and their surroundings. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation 8,400 crashes occurred in the state from 2012 through 2016 in which the police cited driver distraction involving a mobile phone. The number of Illinois distracted driving crashes has increased every year, peaking at 2,345 in 2016.

    The new Illinois distracted driving laws state that mobile phones must be used in hands-free mode or with a wireless earpiece while driving. Motorists under 19 are not permitted to use a mobile phone while driving under any circumstances. Drivers of all ages may not use a mobile phone and drive while in a designated school zone, in a construction zone, or within 500 feet of an emergency scene.

    Violating Illinois distracted driving laws is considered a traffic offense. The fees are $75 for the first violation, $100 for the second, $125 for the third, and $150 for each subsequent offense. Additional violations may result in license penalty points or a suspension. Source: Illinois Tollway

    Unlicensed Driver Fatalities Down

    Statewide (April 12, 2019) – Unlicensed drivers were involved in 23 fatal crashes in 2019, so far. According to the Illinois Department of Traffic, the number of fatalities involving unlicensed drivers has risen every year from 2014 to 2017. Final numbers are still being collected for 2018.

    Some people erroneously believe that liability in accidents involving drivers without a license automatically goes to the unlicensed. The actuality is more complicated than that. If you’ve been involved in an accident with an unlicensed driver then contact Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys to explore the best options for you.

    Source: http://www.idot.illinois.gov

  • Accident Statistics

    Improper Seatbelt Use Responsible For 27% of Crash Fatalities

    Statewide (August 8, 2019) – The Illinois Department of Traffic has reported 150 fatal crash fatalities where not using or improperly using a seatbelt was a contributing factor. The number represents 27 percent of all Illinois fatal crash deaths in 2019. While the figure is still disappointingly high, it marks a slight decrease from 2018, which had 154 deaths year-to-date.

    Lerner and Rowe would like to remind you and your family to always buckle up. Wearing a seatbelt is a basic thing that can help avoid many types of injuries and needless death. While car accidents are sometimes unavoidable, severe injuries and death can be prevented by the simple act of wearing a seatbelt properly. Source: Illinois DoT

    Traffic Fatalities Down in First Half 2019

    Statewide (July 8, 2019) – The Illinois Department of Transportation has reported 440 traffic fatalities in the first six months of 2019. The agency reported 516 crash deaths over the same time period in 2018. The numbers mark a nearly 15-percent decrease in vehicular crash fatalities.

    The attorneys at Lerner and Rowe are thrilled to see that Illinois streets and freeways have been safer this year. However, just because the roads have been safer doesn’t mean it’s time to be complacent. As always, we strongly urge you to exercise caution while driving. Be aware of the common types of traffic accidents in Chicago. Should you and your family be involved in an automobile accident, please contact Lerner and Rowe immediately. Source: Illinois DOT

    Pediatric Vehicular Heatstroke Death Peaked in 2018

    Statewide (June 27, 2019) – With the summer season underway, the attorneys at Lerner and Rowe want to make sure that you’re aware of the dangers of pediatric vehicular heatstroke. Many children suffer, and some have died because they’ve been left inside a hot car or found their way into one. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 52 children died of vehicular heatstroke in 2018 – the highest number in 20 years. NoHeatstroke.org reported 16 pediatric heatstroke deaths in Illinois between 1998 and 2018.

    Pediatric vehicular heatstroke death is completely preventable. Do not leave your children inside a hot car for an extended period of time. Lock your doors so that a curious child can’t make their way into your vehicle during the summer. Also, place your purse or a teddy bear in the front seat when running errands with a child to help remember they are in the car with you. If you see an unattended child that appears to be suffering in a car, please follow Illinois’ Good Samaritan Law procedures. Source: NHTSA

    Work Zone Fatalities Continue to Plummet

    Statewide (May 7, 2019) – Crash fatalities in work zones continue to plummet in Illinois. This particular type of automobile accident was responsible for 46 deaths in 2015, decreasing to 44 deaths in 2016, 30 deaths in 2017, and 18 deaths in 2018. As of May, there has only been one Illinois work zone crash fatality in 2019.

    While it’s fantastic news that work zone crash fatalities continue to decline, they are still a dangerous possibility. This is especially true during Chicago’s summer months, when construction projects and work zones are more abundant than other times of the year. The attorneys at Lerner and Rowe urge you to be especially cautious when driving near work zones.

    Source: Illinois Department of Transportation

    Fatal Crashes More Common on City Streets

    Chicago (April 17, 2019) – Although motorists generally drive slower on city streets than they do on highways, city roads are more dangerous. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, 43 percent of fatal vehicle crashes in 2019 occurred on city streets. That’s more than double the amount that happen on interstate roads, state-US highways, and county-township roads, respectively.

    If you’re involved in a car or motorcycle accident in Chicago city streets, contact the attorneys at Lerner and Rowe to find out what kind of compensation you may be entitled to.

    Source: http://www.idot.illinois.gov/

  • News

    Governor Expands and Strengthens “Scott’s Law”

    Rockford (August 1, 2019) – Governor JB Pritzker recently signed Illinois Senate Bill 1862 into law. The bill expands and strengthens the coverage of “Scott’s Law,” which was designed to protect law enforcement officials that are parked on the side of the road. The amendment now covers “first responders, IDOT workers, law enforcement officers, and any individual authorized to be on the highway within the scope of their employment or job duties.” If you’re driving in Illinois and see an authorized vehicle with flashing lights then the law requires that you safely slow down, move over, and, if necessary, stop so that the government workers can carry out their duties.

    In addition to expanding the law beyond law enforcement and first responders, the fees for Scott’s Law violations have been increased. First-time offenders will be fined at least $250, while repeat violators will be find at least $750 and up to $10,000. The attorney’s at Lerner and Rowe applaud the Illinois General Assembly (ILGA) for proposing a sensible law that protects government workers on the road. Source: ILGA

    Illinois Hot Weather Patrols Available for Assistance

    Downers Grove (July 18, 2019) – The Illinois Tollway has announced that it will have “Hot Weather Patrols” available around the clock in order to assist motorists. The Hot Weather Patrols will be equipped to quickly identify and assist drivers stranded during the hottest period of the year. Illinois Tollway Executive Director José Alvarez said, “Launching these Hot Weather Patrols is part of our commitment to safety and ensures drivers whose cars have become disabled can get out of the heat and obtain the assistance they need to reach their destinations.”

    Hot Weather Patrols are available 24 hours a day to those driving in Illinois by dialing *999 on a mobile phone. The attorneys at Lerner and Rowe applaud the Illinois Tollway for being extra cautious while the temperatures and humidity are brutal. While additional services are now available, we urge you to use the best safety practices possible. Should you need legal assistance because of a summer traffic accident, Lerner and Rowe is here to assist you. Source: Illinois Tollway

    New Mobile Phones Laws in Effect

    Statewide (July 1, 2019) – The Illinois General Assembly has amended the Illinois Vehicle Code with House Bill 4846. Beginning July 1, 2019, motorists caught using a mobile phone while driving will be issued a moving violation. The citation also applies to first-time offenders, who were previously issued warnings. In addition to escalating fees, repeat offenders may have their licenses suspended after a third violation. Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker is also considering a proposal that would raise the initial fine for using a mobile phone while driving from $75 to $1,000.

    The attorneys at Lerner and Rowe applaud Illinois’ more aggressive stance on phone usage while driving. Distracted driving is a serious problem, especially in the summer months. The new laws should help curb distracted driving and eliminate repeat offenders, which is a great thing for all motorists. Source: Illinois Policy

    Governor Signs Recreational Marijuana Bill

    Chicago (June 25, 2019) – Governor JB Pritzker signed House Bill 1438 into law, legalizing recreational marijuana in Illinois. This makes Illinois the eleventh state to legalize marijuana and the second to do so legislatively (as opposed to by ballot). Recreational marijuana was one of Pritzker’s key issues when he ran for office in 2016. The new law goes into effect on January 1, 2020.

    In addition to providing the state with another source of tax revenue, the new law aims to curb opioid abuse and allow people charged with possession of small amounts of marijuana to have their records expunged. While many experts expect the law to be positive for Illinois, it also increases the chances of car accidents and motorcycle crashes. The attorneys at Lerner and Rowe urge you to exercise caution and be aware of the effects marijuana can have on driving. Source: Vox

    Chicago Area Police Test Hybrid Ford Interceptors

    Joliet, IL (June 3, 2019) – Law enforcement agents from Chicago and surrounding cities were invited by Ford to test drive three new models of its Interceptor vehicles. American law enforcement agencies have been using customized Ford cars in the field since 1979. The company started making Interceptor variants of its Crown Victoria sedan for law enforcement use in 1999. Since then, Ford has extended the program to its Taurus and Explorer models.

    Ford is touting the 2020 Interceptors as the first pursuit-rated hybrid vehicles on the market. Lerner and Rowe is proud of our friends in the Chicago Police Department for moving to vehicles that allow them to effectively do their jobs while using less fuel and curbing CO2 emissions. Our firm is honored to partner with Chicago PD on several events throughout the year. Source: ABC7

    Sharp Registration Fee Increase Proposed for Electric Cars

    Springfield (May 6, 2019) – Owners of all-electric cars may be in for a shock when it comes time for registration renewal. The Illinois General Assembly has proposed an amendment to House Bill 3233 that would increase the annual registration fee for all-electric automobiles from $17.50 to $1,000.

    While proposed registration fees are higher for all vehicles, the increase for fully-electric cars is particularly steep. The justification for the amendment is that fully-electric cars do not pay gasoline tax, which is partially used for road repairs. Illinois has a number of treacherous roads and the state needs to increase repair funding. The proposed amendment to HB3233 would ensure that all motorists contribute to road repair, not just those using gasoline.

    Source: http://www.ilga.gov/

    Legislators to Decide on Fully-Autonomous Cars

    Springfield (April 1, 2019) – Driverless vehicles may be coming to Illinois in the near future. The Illinois General Assembly is currently deliberating the Autonomous Vehicle Act (HB2575),which would allow the use of fully-autonomous vehicles on state highways, whether they have a human driver or not. HB2575 is currently with the General Assembly Rules Committee.

    Fully-autonomous cars are currently being developed by Daimler, Ford, General Motors, Tesla, and others. Powered by artificial intelligence, fully-autonomous vehicles have enormous potential to prevent car accidents. However, the technology also introduces new issues that require regulation. Fully-autonomous vehicles may be available as soon as Q4 2019, with many manufacturers aiming to sell fully-autonomous cars by 2021.

    Source: http://www.ilga.gov