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The role of cellphones in a fatal car accident in Illinois

In Illinois and across the country, drivers are constantly connected through use of smartphones and tablets. This has increased the frequency of drivers getting into accidents due to the negligence of believing they are able to multitask and use their phones while operating a car. This can lead to serious injuries and a fatal car accident. Those who have been negatively affected through the loss of a loved one after an accident like this need to be aware of how and why it happens as well as what to do in the aftermath.

While it is known to be illegal to use a cellphone while driving, that does not stop drivers from doing it. Even the risk of fines and other penalties has not tamped down on the activity to a significant degree. One particular Illinois family faced this reality as a young man was killed while riding his bicycle after a vehicle hit him while the driver was using her cellphone. Since this happened in 2006, there were no penalties for the driver in spite of the fact that it was declared a homicide. Subsequently, the family succeeded in having a law passed in the son's name to ban drivers from texting and driving in the state.

In addition, a recent law banned drivers from talking on a handheld device while operating a vehicle. None of this has dissuaded a significant portion of the population in the United States from continuing to use their phones while driving. From 2010 to 2014, the percentages rose from 0.9 percent in 2010 to 2.2 percent in 2014. The Illinois Department of Transportation keeps a record of the number of accidents that involve cellphone usage. From 2010 to 2014, they found that more than 1,200 accidents annually happened in which cellphone use was involved.

When there is a car crash with a fatality, the fatal car accident victim and the family need to have a full investigation to determine the cause of the accident in order to have the foundation of a possible legal filing. For legal assistance after an automobile accident, the first call should be to an experienced legal professional to move forward with a claim.

Source:, "How dangerous is distracted driving?," Jessica Kunz, Nov. 25, 2015

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