Chicago traffic deaths decline due to safer roads and safer vehicles

The numbers are shocking and eye-opening. Nearly 300,000 Chicago traffic accidents occur yearly and a Chicago deadly accident takes place every 21.5 hours. However, one study shows that some measures have resulted in about 200 lives being saved each year in Chicago. The rates of deadly Chicago traffic accidents and serious Illinois personal injuries have decreased significantly since the early 1990’s due in large part to safety enhancements on Illinois roads in addition to newer motor vehicles that offer a better change of surviving Chicago car accidents. The annual number of deaths and injuries from vehicle accidents in the Chicago area fell 12.5 percent from 2002 to 2005 and fatalities alone decreased 30.5 percent from 2005 to 2008, from 629 deaths annually to 437. The statistics are based on data collected by the Illinois Department of Transportation. DuPage County recorded the lowest fatality rates over the entire period studied and suburban Cook County and Lake County had the second lowest fatality rates. Illinois’s tougher seat belt laws as well as roadside checks aimed at catching drunk or otherwise impaired motorists are also helping to cut the rate of deadly crashes.

Nonetheless, there is still a lot of improvement to be made in Illinois road safety. In the city of Chicago, one of the biggest challenges will be decreasing vehicle-pedestrian accidents. Further, despite the greatest decline between 2002 and 2008, the crash rates are still highest in the city – three times the rate of some rural areas. Almost 25 percent of fatal crashes in Chicago involve pedestrians. Additionally, fatal Chicago vehicle accidents occur across the Chicago metropolitan area late at night. Traffic fatalities occurring at night accounted for more than a third of all vehicle-related deaths in the Chicago region in 2008.

You can read the full Chicago traffic deaths and injuries report by clicking the link.

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