Driving down Illinois roads while drowsy is a dangerous thing to do. Many people are willing to risk driving while drowsy because they figure that they will be able to keep themselves awake long enough to make it to their destination. Unfortunately, the fact that one in five automobile accidents is connected to driving while fatigued shows that this problem is a lot more serious than people make it out to be.
The citizens of Illinois may be surprised to learn that the number of pedestrians who have been killed by vehicles on the road last year has reached a high the nation has not seen since 1990. To be more concrete, around 6,227 individuals passed away due to a fatal accident while they were walking on foot, which is about 250 more fatalities than what 2017 saw. The majority of deaths took place late at night; in fact, about 90 percent of the total increase in the number of dying pedestrians over the past ten years can be attributed to nighttime accidents.
Large commercial trucks travel throughout Illinois every day, and fatal crashes across the country involving big rigs increased 42 percent between 2009 and 2017. Road Safe America, co-founded by a man who lost a son in a truck accident, has joined other activists to petition senators and representatives to pass legislation that requires commercial trucks to use speed limiters and automatic emergency braking systems.
Nearly one third of motor vehicle-related fatalities involve speeding, so Illinois residents may be wondering what is being done about this. At the root of the issue seems to be a lack of proper education on the dangers of speeding. Speeding raises the risk for a crash as well as the severity of those that occur, endangering pedestrians and bicyclists in particular. Conversely, a slight decrease in speed makes a positive impact on crash risk and severity.
Car infotainment systems are a major source of distraction for many drivers in Illinois and across the U.S., according to a recent AAA-contracted study that analyzed 30 such systems on new 2017 vehicles. Researchers found all the systems demanded either a moderate level of attention (seven in all), a high level (11 in all) or very high (12). Cars in the last category include the Audi Q7 QPP, Dodge Durango GT, Mazda3 Touring and Tesla Model 7.
Illinois motorists may find recent statistics about dump truck accidents beneficial. Although there have been initiatives enacted by federal regulators as well as industry safety experts, the number of serious accidents involving large trucks have been on the increase.
Residents of Illinois who are interested in new vehicle safety technology may know about external airbags. While these are far from being implemented on vehicles, many car parts manufacturers are considering strategies for their development. The ZF Group is one such manufacturer, and it has some safety data to back up the benefits of external airbags.
Data gathered by the U.S. Department of Transportation and other organizations indicates that one out of every three adult drivers sleeps less than seven hours a night. Researchers examining data from earlier studies by USDOT determined that the odds of causing a crash increased as the number of hours slept decreased. In the 5,470 crashes studied, drivers who reported sleeping six hours per night were 1.3 times likelier to cause a crash.
Some truck drivers in Illinois struggle with fatigue and distraction when behind the wheel. The National Safety Council reports that fatigue is a factor in more than one-quarter of single commercial vehicle accidents and 13 percent of fatal truck accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that driver fatigue might cause up to 100,000 accidents each year involving all vehicles. According to the National Center for Statistics and Analysis, over 15 percent of injury crashes and 10 percent of fatal crashes happen because of distraction.
The problem in the eyes of some observers is that this mode of mobility has grown too fast. In many cities, the scooters showed up unannounced and without safety rules. The appearances have proven unsafe, as evidenced by two adult fatalities reported last month. In both cities where the deaths occurred, individuals over 18 can ride scooters without helmets, and that makes for dire consequences.