The Chicago area is experiencing increased enforcement efforts this month as Illinois police take aim at unsafe driving behaviors. A number of police departments are unified in their efforts to enforce a variety of violations, including speeding, DUI, tailgating, lane violations, failing to wear seatbelts, and texting while driving.
The September campaign will focus on the Reagan Memorial Tollway and the Interstate 355 corridor. Also in focus is the Tri-State Tollway, which contains portions of Interstate 80 (I-80), I-294 and I-94. These areas were chosen because the campaign's goal is to reduce accidents at interchanges and off ramps. The police are also looking for drivers who fail to slow down or change lanes when approaching a police, emergency or construction vehicle on the shoulder.
The campaign kicked off in time for Labor Day weekend, historically one of the most heavily-traveled and tragic times of the year for motorists. The holiday weekend is typically plagued by drunk drivers, so law enforcement departments around Illinois increased patrols to deter alcohol-related fatalities. Regardless of Chicago Police efforts, six were killed in weekend crashes and more than a dozen injured.
In 2009, Illinois traffic fatalities dipped below 1,000 for the first time since 1921. The reduction of motorist deaths can be attributed to tougher laws, focused law enforcement efforts, improved education about dangerous driving behaviors, and an increase in the crashworthiness of automobiles. Unfortunately, 911 people still died on Illinois roadways last year; police are using initiatives such as the September crackdown in hopes of lowering that number in 2010.
While Chicago's roads slowly become safer, it is still a relatively dangerous area as many Chicagoans still use dangerous driving practices. Please follow all traffic laws and drive defensively to avoid accidents with careless or inattentive drivers.
If you or a loved one is the unfortunate victim of a drunk or distracted driver, please contact an experienced personal injury lawyer to discuss what your legal rights are.