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Crystal Lake Car Accident Attorneys

Winter has finally hit Illinois... and hard. Starting the season off with ice and snow storms serves as a good reminder about driving safely during this colder part of the year. Adverse weather conditions can lead to black ice, sleet, and poor visibility, all of which lend themselves to vehicle accidents. If you or anyone you know is injured in an auto accident this winter, contact a reputable personal injury attorney to learn more about your legal right to compensation for your injuries.

Illinois Personal Injury Law

Auto accidents are one of the biggest contributors to personal injury civil actions in the United States. When a driver causes an accident, that driver (and/or their insurance company) is generally on the hook for any property damage and personal injury he or she causes to another driver or pedestrian.

In Illinois, an injured party may recover monetary damages in the form of medical bill expenses, rehabilitative costs, pain and suffering, and other financial avenues that are quantifiable. If you are permanently or even temporarily disabled, you may miss time from work, in which you may be entitled to lost wages or a permanent diminished earning capacity.

It is a common misconception that even if the plaintiff (the injured party bringing the lawsuit) is partially at fault, they cannot recover damages. Illinois has adopted a contributory negligence approach, which allows partially at-fault plaintiffs to recover damages, so long as they are not found to be more than 50 percent at fault. So, for example, a jury determines that a plaintiff is 10 percent at fault for his or her accident. The overall award the jury decides on will, subsequently, be reduced by 10 percent. If a plaintiff is found to have contributed more than 50 percent to the accident, then the claim will be completely barred. Contributory negligence is a protection for plaintiffs that allows them to recover even if they contributed to the accident overall.

Tips for Driving in Bad Weather Conditions

The dangers of driving (and possibilities of accidents) only increase as the weather worsens. There are many ways to ensure that you do not contribute to causing accidents and many more ways to ensure your safety on dangerous roads. Consider the following tips before heading out into the winter storms:

  • Drive only when necessary. Consider using public transport, where available, or walk if it is safe to do so
  • Keep a significant distance between the cars ahead of you. The general consensus is that four car lengths is adequate for normal condition freeway driving this should be increased during inclement weather
  • Remember that bridges often ice before roads
  • Be especially careful when making sharp turns, so as not to slide
  • Keep an adequate distance between you and any snowplows or snow removal vehicles so as not to disrupt your view or traffic, and
  • Always (adverse conditions or not) carry a roadside safety kit including:
    • Flares
    • Water
    • Jumper cables
    • Flashlight
    • Rope/string
    • Non-perishable food
    • Water supply
    • Matches
    • Blanket, and
    • Extra clothing.

Following these seemingly simple tips can greatly decrease your chances of being involved in an accident during adverse weather conditions. As always, the most important tip is to simply be aware of your surroundings, keep your phones out of your hands and keep your eyes on the road. Watching out for others is the best way to protect yourself on public roads.

Crystal Lake, Illinois Car Accident Lawyers

Winter is always a time where we see an increase in auto accidents. Unfortunately, auto accidents in adverse conditions can be particularly devastating and have a tremendous effect on one's personal, professional, and emotional well-being. If you or anyone you know has been an Illinois car accident and suffered injury, you may be entitled to compensation. At our office, you can rest assured that our skilled Crystal Lake personal injury attorneys will work tirelessly on your behalf to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries. We are truly dedicated to ensuring a positive legal experience and result for our clients. Reach out and contact our Crystal Lake, Illinois office today at 800-338-3833. We serve McHenry, Cook, DeKalb, Boone, Kane, and Winnebago Counties.

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