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IL accident lawyerAnyone who watches the news knows that our nation’s roadways can be dangerous. Statistics show that approximately 2 million people are injured in car accidents every year in the United States. There can be many causes for a vehicle crash, including inclement weather, negligent drivers, and poor road conditions. However, improper or incomplete maintenance on automobiles can also contribute to causing accidents. In some cases, an auto repair shop or the dealership may put in a faulty part from the manufacturer. In other situations, an untrained employee may not install a piece of equipment properly, putting a driver at risk for significant injury. Still more scenarios involve negligent drivers who disregard notices to replace recalled parts or do not properly maintain their cars.

Routine Service Affects Road Safety

It is important for vehicle owners to inspect their cars and perform regular maintenance, or they may be held responsible for collisions that are caused by failure to keep their vehicle in safe and proper working order. For example, a tire that does not have enough tread can cause a driver to slide on ice or snow and hit another vehicle or a pedestrian. A tire blowout can lead to a motorist losing control and sending his or her car careening into oncoming traffic.

A few common examples of issues that can cause a car to malfunction:

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IL accident lawyerThe winter holiday season is a time for special family and friend gatherings. Whether they are Christmas shopping or traveling to visit relatives, more people are on the roadways, which can wreak havoc on traffic. In addition, this time of year also brings inclement weather, especially in Illinois and throughout other parts of the country. Snow, sleet, and wind can cause blizzard-like conditions that can make it difficult for drivers to see in front of them. These “white-out” factors often result in chain-reaction crashes and multiple-vehicle pile-ups. This is why it is especially important to remember basic safe driving tactics to avoid serious injuries due to a car accident.

How Traffic and Weather Can Impact Travel

Regardless if you are making a long-distance trip to visit relatives or just heading across town, you should follow the rules of the road. However, you should also be aware of how weather and holiday traffic can affect your route. Here are some helpful strategies for driving during the busy and chaotic holiday season:

  • Plan ahead: Before embarking on your trip, make sure your vehicle is in proper working order for extended travel. This can include installing snow tires and making sure your windshield fluid and antifreeze fluids are full. You should also keep an emergency kit in your vehicle in case your car breaks down or traffic comes to a standstill.
  • Stay awake and alert: Make sure you get plenty of sleep before a long drive that may take you across state lines. If you are driving drowsy, you risk falling asleep behind the wheel and crashing into other cars, medians, or even buildings.
  • Reduce your speed: Give yourself plenty of time considering long traffic delays and lower speeds due to snowy or icy conditions. When precipitation hits the pavement and freezes, it will take a car longer to brake and come to a complete stop. Although you may be in a hurry to get from place to place, slowing down can save being involved in an accident.
  • Drive defensively: Be aware and alert of other drivers on the road. Other motorists may not be paying attention or could be intoxicated and therefore driving recklessly. Never assume what another driver is going to do, but be prepared for sudden lane changes or turns ahead of you.
  • Do not drive impaired: It is illegal to drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol in every state. It is the time of year for office Christmas luncheons or New Year’s Eve parties, where alcoholic beverages may be served. If you choose to drink, call an Uber or appoint a designated driver who is sober.
  • Avoid distractions: Distracted driving can be just as dangerous as impaired driving. Glancing at your phone, eating, applying makeup, or changing the radio station all take your eyes and attention off the road. Even just a few seconds of distraction can greatly reduce your reaction time if the car in front of you suddenly stops.

Contact a Bloomingdale Personal Injury Attorney

When winter weather hits, Illinois motorists need to adjust their driving habits. Even if you are careful about your behavior behind the wheel, other drivers may not be as diligent. If you or a loved one was injured as a result of a vehicle collision, you may be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering, as well as medical bills and lost wages. A skilled DuPage County car accident lawyer from the Law Offices of David W. Clark, P.C. will examine the details of your case to determine if negligence played a role. To schedule your free consultation, call our office today at 630-665-5678.

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IL injury lawyerDaylight savings time is a practice put in place in the United States in 1918 and has long since been a topic of heated discussion and debate. Advocates say having an extra hour of daylight in the evenings during the spring will help people be more active and will keep the roads safer because it is lighter longer. Detractors say it decreases productivity and can make people sick. Regardless of which side you are on, daylight savings time is a part of most people’s lives in the United States. However, there is evidence that daylight savings time is actually hazardous to the general public, due to an increased risk of car accidents following the clock change in the spring.

How Does Daylight Savings Increase Car Accident Risk?

A study in 2014 at the University of Colorado Boulder examined data regarding the prevalence of car accidents in the time period six days immediately following the change in clocks every spring. The results of that study found an increase of 6.3 percent during the six days after we change our clocks. The data was collected over a 10 year period. The reason for this increase in fatalities is because our bodies have a natural clock, known as the circadian rhythm. When the sudden shift in time occurs, it throws our natural clock off temporarily, and our bodies take time to readjust because of the sleep deprivation. This data is also corroborated by a study from Manitoba Public Insurance, an insurance agency in Canada. They found there was a 20% increase in car accidents the day after daylight savings time began compared to the other Mondays of 2014.

How Can This Be Prevented?

If you are worried about your drowsiness affecting your ability to drive a motor vehicle, you should take steps to lessen the likelihood of sleep deprivation. Making sure to go to bed early when you know the clocks will change, staying well-rested, and keeping an eye out for those drivers who were not as prepared as you were will help you stay accident-free after the time change.

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IL injury attorneyAutomobiles are a great convenience for getting from one place to another, but many people do not pay attention to them as much as they should. There are many important aspects of making sure your vehicle is as safe as possible, and tires are one of them. Improper care of tires can cause severe injury or death, so it is important to check on your tires along with the other components of your vehicle to make sure they are running at peak efficiency and performance.

Inflation Tips

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, only 19% of people properly inflate their tires. Having tires inflated to the proper pounds per square inch (PSI) can improve fuel economy by as much as 11 cents per gallon. Proper tire inflation helps your tires last much longer.

Checking your tire pressure with a gauge once a month before the car has been driven will let you know what your tire PSI. Some vehicles have different PSI needed for them to be properly inflated, but you can find your vehicles PSI requirements on the driver’s side doorjamb, the rear edge of the driver’s door or on an inward-facing surface next to the driver’s seating position. Make sure to keep a tire pressure gauge in your vehicle and periodically check the pressure at least once a month.

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