Truck and motor vehicle accidents are all too common throughout Illinois. That is why we feel that it is important to raise awareness surrounding the potential causes of these accidents and discuss the consequences of negligence in order to protect ourselves and those with whom we share the road. While we may not be able to prevent the negligence of others or stop unexpected hazards from posing danger, we can take steps to give us our best chances of staying alive when an accident occurs.
In a recent article by My Journal Carrier, it was reported that a Springfield man died in a truck accident. According to the report, he was not wearing a seat belt when his truck struck an embankment on the Camden Blacktop in Schuyler County. He was thrown from the truck upon collision.
The National Safety Council discusses how seat belts can keep us and our loved ones safe. Wearing a seat belt is imperative because motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of unintentional injury and death across all age groups. In 2012, more than half of passengers who were killed in accidents were not wearing seat belts. However, it is known that seat belts reduce the risk of fatal injury to front seat passengers by 45 %.
Fortunately, seat belt use is on the rise in Illinois, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. As of 2011, seat belt use is at 92.9% in Illinois, as compared to 83% in 2004. However, as you can see from this reported accident, fatalities can and do happen to the 7.1% that do not regularly wear their seat belts.
Furthermore, not only does wearing a seat belt keep you safer, but it is the law. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, every driver and passenger must wear a properly adjusted and fastened safety belt. The fine for not doing so is a minimum of $25, which does not include court costs. Additionally, children under the age of 8 must be in an appropriate child restraint. Failing to provide a child with proper seating and restraints is a minimum fine of $75 for the first offense and $200 for the second offense. However, these costs are meant to be deterrents and to encourage people to be safe, as no price can be put on the life and safety of a person.
Our lawyers care about the safety of our community, and we urge everyone to wear a seat belt every time you get in the car- no matter how close to home you may travel. While we wish that accidents did not have to occur at all, seat belts can lessen the blow of a serious collision and be the difference between life and death. Please remember to buckle up, and remind those you love to do so too.