Articles Posted in Auto Accidents

Since initiating the program more than a decade ago, the use of red-light cameras has been highly debated. While some focus on the legality of the cameras in general, our primary concern is whether they are effective or not in improving safety. What seems to be the problem is in the way in which the term “effective” is viewed, in terms of reducing injuries and fatalities versus simply reducing crashes in general. On one end, there is the argument that even though red-light cameras decrease side-impact collisions, they increase rear-end collisions, and therefore add to the overall crash rate. On the other end, there is the argument that decreasing right-angle collisions is more beneficial because these accidents are more likely to cause serious injury or fatality than are rear-end collisions.

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For decades, research studies and statistical data have continued to show the effectiveness of ‘Graduated Driver Licensing’ (GDL) programs. With every state having adopted GDL laws between 1996 and 2011, the efficacy of such programs in improving safety, preventing accidents, and reducing fatalities, is now clearer than ever. While all states utilize a three-stage system, specific GDL regulations vary by state, including those pertaining to age minimums, supervised practice requirements, as well as restrictions on nighttime driving and passengers. Safety experts argue that even more lives could be saved, and accidents prevented, if states with weaker GDL laws enacted tougher standards.

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Earlier this year, an investigation by the Tribune, which examined demographical factors in sobriety checkpoint, first revealed the harsh reality of what many say is a blatant example of racial profiling. Specifically, that Chicago officials are unfairly targeting Black and Latino communities by employing a racially-based approach in selecting DUI checkpoints locations, as opposed to an objective approach that selects checkpoint locations based upon alcohol-related crash data.

Despite identification of the issue several months ago, ongoing investigation shows that DUI checkpoints still target minority neighborhoods.

As injury attorneys, our concern is accident prevention—-and if sobriety checkpoints can prevent accidents by catching drunk drivers, then shouldn’t their location be determined according to where alcohol-related crashes occur most frequently?

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Drunk driving has been an issue since the invention of the first automobile. Despite efforts of lawmakers, advocacy groups, and local authorities to address this issue, motorists continue to drive while intoxicated. Encouraging new technology, though, seems to offer a sound solution to this age-old problem—breath and touch sensors that can measure alcohol levels, and disable a vehicle when the driver is above the legal limit. In fact, these breakthroughs appear to be so promising that many have compared them to the advents of seatbelts and airbags, in regard to both life-saving potentials as well as affordability.

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Gone are the days of simple dashboards. What once was quite basic—climate controls, audio features, and a small handful of other options—has progressed into oversized sophisticated dashboards equipped with a multitude of features, including smart technology that allows the vehicle to interact not only with occupants but other devices as well. Although designed to improve safety, many question whether incorporating what is essentially a mini-computer mounted to the vehicle’s dash has actually done just the opposite—increase accident risk factors, rather than reduce them. As personal injury lawyers, we can’t help but ignore the dangers associated with the increase of vehicles equipped with these so-called ‘smart dashboards.’

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Since their introduction in the 1980s, airbags have been identified as proven, effective safety devices that drastically reduce the risk of fatality and serious injury to vehicle occupants involved in automobile collisions. The protection offered by airbags is a factor that many car buyers take into consideration when purchasing a vehicle. What many fail to consider, though, is the potential for airbag safety issues associated with the purchase of a used vehicle. After all, airbags are only useful if they are correctly installed, properly functioning, and deploy in the manner in which they are intended to. The Chicago Injury Attorneys of Zneimer & Zneimer P.C. discuss some important tips for consumers to keep in mind when purchasing a used vehicle equipped with airbags.

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The Chicago Attorneys of Zneimer & Zneimer P.C. take note of a decision handed down by the Illinois Appellate Court earlier this month, involving a claim for uninsured motorist coverage extending from a 2009 motorcycle accident that injured two. The case, State Farm Mutual Auto Ins. Co., v. Benedetto, 2015 IL App (1st) 141521, arises from the trial court’s entry of a ruling in favor of the injured motorcyclist. State Farm, filed its timely appeal, contending that both insurance and contract law warrant reversal.

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The Chicago Auto Accident Injury Attorneys, of Zneimer & Zneimer P.C., take note of several recent vehicle recalls affecting more than a million vehicles manufactured by Ford Motor Company. The recalls involve later-models of the Ford Fusion, Fiesta, Edge, Focus, Transit Connect, F150, and Lincoln MKZ. Problems include door latch issues that prevent doors from latching properly or that can come unlatched while driving; steering gear motor components susceptible of corrosion, which can cause loss of power steering; faulty fuel pumps that can cause the car to stall; underbody heat shield issue that can cause fire; and parking lamp software issues.

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Decades of research and data have consistently identified the direct correlation between teen drivers and accident causation. In fact, the CDC reports an average of 7 fatalities per day amongst teens between the ages of 16 and 19, making motor vehicle crashes the leading cause of death for this age group. Ensuring that your teen has the skills and training to handle the responsibility of driving is certainly one of the most critical factors to preventing accidents. However, parents are also encouraged to take into consideration the type of vehicle that their teen will be driving. The Chicago Auto Accident Attorneys, of Zneimer & Zneimer P.C., discuss some important tips to guide parents in the process of buying a car for their teen driver.

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The Chicago Car Accident Attorneys of Zneimer & Zneimer P.C. take note of a recent auto wreck that took the life of two Aurora teens earlier this month. Though utterly tragic, the circumstances surrounding this incident can hopefully alert parents to the dangers that accompany newly licensed, teen and/or inexperienced drivers.

The facts of this devastating accident, as reported by the Tribune, are as follows: A 17-year-old driver of an SUV, along with his 5 passengers, traveling from Aurora to Rochelle during foggy conditions, ran a red-light and collided with a semi-truck that was attempting to turn left on Illinois Highway 38. Tragically, two of the passengers, both 16-years of age, died as a result of the crash.

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