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Leading Causes of Car Accidents in Chicago

Posted on May 18, 2022

Vehicle accidents occur in a wide variety of ways throughout Chicago. Unfortunately, many of these incidents are caused by the careless or negligent actions of other drivers. However, car accidents can also be caused by the negligence of those who have a duty to maintain the safety of the roadways. Here, we want to examine the leading causes of car accidents in Chicago, and we hope this information helps you take the steps necessary to avoid disastrous collisions.

Chicago Car Accident Data

When we examine data available from the Illinois Department of Transportation, we can see that there were more than 81,000 total vehicle accidents in the city of Chicago during the latest reporting year of data on file. Out of these incidents, there were 187 fatalities and more than 21,000 total injuries.

Chicago is a busy place, and vehicle accidents are a part of the reality of living and visiting here. These accidents occur in a wide variety of ways, though most of these accidents are caused by the careless or negligent actions of other drivers.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is a problem all over the country, not just here in Chicago. However, Chicago residents and visitors are particularly interconnected when it comes to their mobile devices. Cell phones have been a leading cause of distraction for years, and the problem does seem to be getting worse. Distracted driving affects not only drivers, but also pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcyclists, and anyone else in the vicinity of the roadway.

Alcohol and Drug Impairment

Alcohol and drug impairment have been a leading cause of traffic fatalities in Illinois and Chicago for years. The Illinois DOT statistics show us that there were more than 1,000 alcohol-impaired driving incidents that occurred in the city during the latest year of data on file. Out of these incidents, there were nine fatalities and 379 injuries.

When it comes to drug impairment, we have to examine both illegal and narcotic usage as well as prescription and over-the-counter medication use. Any substance that impairs a person’s ability to operate their vehicle is dangerous.

Speeding

Speeding is a leading cause of injury accidents throughout the city of Chicago. Drivers are in a hurry, but that does not work well with the congestion of the city. Speeding significantly increases the chance that an injury will occur in an accident, and this is particularly a problem for impacts involving pedestrians and bicyclists, both of which are considered vulnerable roadway users.

Aggressive Driving

Yes, people do get mad behind the wheel. That happens to all of us. However, when individuals use their vehicles to display their anger, often in the form of road rage, serious injuries can occur. Any form of aggressive driving has the potential to cause injuries to others on the roadway and in the vicinity of the roadway.

Failing to Yield

Failing to yield the right of way is one of the most common traffic violations in Chicago. This can include drivers failing to yield to other vehicles as well as drivers failing to yield to bicyclists and pedestrians. Traffic signs typically make it very clear about who is responsible for yielding to who around the city, and these signs must be adhered to.