The Illinois Vehicle Code requires that every driver of a vehicle approaching an intersection, which is marked by a stop sign, stops before entering the intersection (625 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/11-1204). Nearly 700,000 police-reported motor vehicle crashes occur annually at stop signs, and approximately one-third of these crashes involve injuries. The majority of car manufacturers are including more accident preventing features in order to protect drivers, for example front and rear end sensors which alert the driver of a near object. But at the same time, many other car features like GPS and Touch Screen dashboards might distract the driver from stopping at a stop sign and causing an accident.
Why do Stop Sign Car Accidents Happen?
Impatience or inattention are the two most common reasons drivers ignore stop signs while driving. According to a National Institute of Health study, stop sign violations accounted for about 70 percent of all crashes from 2000 to 2006 in four major U.S. cities that were reviewed in the study. A substantial amount of drivers admit to being distracted, when the collision occurred. One of the biggest distractions reported to affect stop sign related collisions is using a cellphone while driving. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reported that two separate studies have linked talking on a cellphone to a fourfold increase in the likelihood of a crash resulting in injury. In an era of Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, younger drivers are more likely than older drivers to talk on phones and to text while driving. Also, they are constantly checking their phones when at a red light and when they stop at a stop sign. Younger drivers will often not stop late at night at stop signs because they do not see any oncoming traffic. These types of high risk behaviors are many of the reasons young drivers have a higher percentage of being involved in stop sign collisions.
About two-thirds of stop sign violation crashes involve drivers who say they stopped before proceeding. At stop signs, drivers are required to stop, look for any oncoming vehicles, and judge whether it is safe to proceed. Forty-four percent of drivers involved in stop sign car collisions admit to not being able to see the other vehicle coming, even though they stopped at the stop sign. The design of the road or intersection may be contributing factors to reduced visibility. Parked vehicles, shrubbery, or glare may also obstruct the driver’s visibility, which could result in potential collisions.
What Can be Done to Prevent Stop Sign Collisions in Chicago?
The majority of stop sign related collisions occur in intersections. The IIHS and the Department of Transportation advocate for the focus to be put on improving the design of intersections by implementing safer forms of traffic control. Pavement markers that warn drivers of an upcoming stop sign can get a driver’s attention. Also, intersections should be checked periodically to see if the stop signs are visible and are not being obstructed. Installing all way stop signs can also be a method of accident prevention. All way stop signs can reduce overall crashes by forty to sixty percent.
The automotive industry has begun implementing crash avoidance technologies that can alert the driver before a crash or at least reduce the severity of the crash. Front crash prevention systems such as radars, sensors or cameras alert the driver when another vehicle is close. Some of these systems are linked to the car’s brake system, which allows the car to apply the brakes automatically if the driver does not respond. In March 2016, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety announced a commitment of 20 major automakers that represent 99 percent of U.S. vehicle sales, to make front crash prevention systems standard on virtually all car models by September 2022.
What to Do When You Have Been in a Stop Sign Related Collision: Who’s at fault?
Illinois uses a “fault” system when determining who is liable for the damages that result from the car accident. If you are ever in a stop sign related car accident, the most important factor is establishing liability in order to get adequate compensation for your damages, whether personal injury damages or damages to your property. This is where the attorneys at Abels & Annes can help. If there were any witnesses to your accident, it is important to get their information because it will help in determining who is liable. Liability means that a person is legally responsible for the accident and damages. Also, it is critical that you call the police immediately when an accident occurs. The police will arrive at the scene of the accident and will file an official police report which will be beneficial in determining the at-fault driver’s negligence. The police will assess the accident and will be able to handle any situation that may arise after the accident.
If you have been injured, or someone you love has been injured or killed in a stop sign related car collision, the personal injury attorneys at Abels & Annes can help you. Whatever injury or damage you may have suffered, our experienced team of attorneys has the knowledge necessary to make sure you recover all the damages to which you may be entitled. We can help you through the confusing process of dealing with insurance paperwork, medical bills, disability forms, and other issues that may arise, particularly when you are trying to focus on recovery and back to being healthy again.
With a simple toll-free telephone call, the stop-sign collision attorneys at Abels & Annes will be happy to give you a free consultation. We can answer your questions and provide you the information you need to determine how to proceed in order to obtain recovery.
If you are the victim of a stop sign collision, contact Abels & Annes at (855) LAW-CHICAGO (529-2442), locally in Chicago at (312) 924-7575, or contact us online. If we agree to represent you, we will never charge you a fee unless we make a recovery on your behalf and we will fight for the best possible outcome in your case. Call Abels & Annes today and find out how we can help you to get your life back on track.
If you were injured in a Chicago stop sign car accident, call Abels & Annes, P.C. toll free at (855) LAW-CHICAGO today.
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