Higher speeds and more traffic make highways a dangerous place to have a car accident. Especially on interstate highways where there are a high number of large commercial trucks, any accident has the potential to be deadly. Illinois has long been a transportation hub and has some of the highest amounts of interstate miles of highway in the country, with some of largest amounts of commercial truck traffic as well. Now with speed limits being raised on some of these highways, there may be more highway accidents than ever in the Land of Lincoln.
Illinois: Third Most Interstate Miles In The Country
First the railroad descended on Illinois and then came the interstates. Chicago, being the Midwest hub, has always brought transportation modes into and through the state of Illinois. That and being centrally located in the middle of the country, it is no surprise that Illinois has the third largest amount of interstate highway miles, only behind the much larger states of Texas and California.
There are over 2,200 miles of interstates running through Illinois with 23 different highways criss-crossing the state. Every day, 50 million miles are driven on interstates just in the Chicago area! All this traffic, made up of small commuter cars, double-length semi-trailers and everything in between, share the same road and it only takes one small mistake to cause a large accident.
Frequency Of Auto Accidents On Illinois Highways
Almost half of all the accidents in Illinois happen on the highway, accounting for over a third of vehicle accident fatalities in the state. Every day, thousands of accidents and injuries happen across the state. On Illinois highways in 2011:
- There were over 23,000 injury accidents
- There were 349 fatalities
- There were over 100,000 accidents
Speed is one of the largest contributors to accidents on highways. The higher speeds and increased congestion makes it a hot bed for accidents. Add into this equation the large amount of commercial or cargo trucks on the highways of Illinois, it can be a dangerous place to drive. These large trucks cannot stop quickly, especially at such high speeds.
Another speed factor that drivers need to be aware of is the increase of the speed limit on rural interstates in Illinois and the effect this may have on accidents. Although only a five MPH increase to 70 MPH, this small increase will have a large impact on braking and stopping distances. Drivers will need to leave more room to stop between them and the car in front of them.
Almost a quarter of the accidents that happen on the highways of Illinois result in an injury. Any type of injury done at higher speeds can cause long-term issues, especially involving brain, spine, neck and back injuries. It is not uncommon for insurance companies to offer an upfront payout to injured victims to avoid paying out on long-term injuries. For those injured in a highway accident, consulting an attorney before accepting any deal with an insurance company is advisable.
Legal help for motorists injured on Illinois highways
Unlike an auto accident on a local street or road, accidents on Illinois highways frequently involve vehicles and drivers from out of state. These out-of-state parties add a layer of complexity to car accident cases on Illinois highways and Interstates. Our law firm has successfully prosecuted highway accident cases on behalf of injured motorists in both the Chicago metropolitan area as well as Interstates throughout Illinois. Before you try to resolve your injury claim with an insurance carrier, talk to our team for a free case evaluation.
Learn more about Illinois highway accidents: