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Illinois injury attorney, Illinois car accident lawyer, Illinois personal injury lawyer,As we reported this summer, Illinois introduced several new DUI laws in 2016 in an ongoing battle to reduce the number of drunk driving-related accidents. One change that went into effect this year lifted the prohibition on DUI offenders from driving at all during the first 30 days of a summary suspension with the use of an ignition interlock device. Offenders are now permitted to continue driving with restricted privileges provided that they install an ignition interlock device and submit to regular monitoring of the device to ensure their continued sobriety while driving.

Repeat offenders may also receive restricted privileges with interlock devices, and even four-time DUI offenders, previously banned from driving for life, may be eligible for restricted driving permits, again with an interlock device. Given that DUIs have risen over 20 percent in some areas over the last five years despite DUI law expansions, many are concerned that the devices are not as effective as intended.

What Is an Ignition Interlock Device?

Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois wrongful death attorney, Illinois car accident lawyer,No matter where you reside, many laws exist to fight and prevent impaired driving and the fatality and injury statistics that sadly accompany drunk driving accidents. The state of Illinois has its own set of laws in place to combat the problematic behavior of driving under the influence, and police work hard to enforce these laws to hold offenders accountable for their actions. Are Victims’ Rights Protected? DUI offenders are held responsible for their actions, but how do these repercussions affect the victims of a crash? When it comes to drinking and driving, state law focuses on punishment and fines placed upon the driver found guilty of driving under the influence as a main avenue for addressing the problem. Convictions and their consequences vary, including everything from short-term and long-term loss of driving privileges to imprisonment and community service. Conviction fines can spike as high as $25,000, and a third conviction or an Aggravated DUI (that results in serious bodily harm or disfigurement) are deemed Class 2 or Class 4 felonies, which impact a driver’s record for a significant amount of time. Apart from enforcing certain laws on those guilty of drunk driving that bring considerable consequences to the forefront, criminal charges alone do not do much to protect the rights of victims following an accident. Victims of drunk driving incidents are protected under certain basic at-fault motorist laws, however, and one course of action they can pursue to protect themselves is to file a personal injury claim. There is also something called civil liability, which refers to the driver who caused the crash and their responsibility to pay for certain damages, such as automobile damages and medical bills to gaps in employment compensation. Knowing Where You Stand

Since 1995, the Zero Tolerance state law has enforced a range of penalties for drunk driving offenders, but only so much can be done on the end of criminal charges where victims are concerned. Regardless of the circumstances that surround your accident, this is why it is so important to speak with a qualified, knowledgeable Lake County drunk driving accident attorney if you are a victim of an impaired driving collision. Personal injury claims can be tricky, so it is crucial to ensure you are equipped with the proper legal representation and that your rights are protected. Call Salvi & Maher, LLP today at 847-662-3303 to schedule a free consultation.




Dangers of Buzzed Driving

Posted on Thursday, 30 June 2016 in Drunk Driving Accidents
Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois wrongful death attorney, Illinois car accident lawyer,We have all heard the opinions and controversy surrounding the topic of buzzed driving, but when it comes to car accident statistics, there is one undeniable truth: Buzzed driving is still considered drunk driving. Even just a little buzz, or just one drink too many can impair a driver and cause them to make a poor decision behind the wheel. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) stresses the fact that drinking alcohol impairs more than just our ability to drive, it affects our judgement about whether or not we can or should get behind the wheel. What the Statistics Indicate According to the NHTSA, almost 10,000 people die on our roadways each year due to drunk driving and America has more drunk drivers than most countries have people. Every 23 minutes, an impaired driver claims a life between the hours of midnight and 3 a.m. These drunk driving statistics include buzzed drivers, who by definition are found to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .01 to .07. Although this BAC is technically under the legal limit acceptable for driving, studies have shown that even these levels of alcohol in the system can be dangerous. One such study conducted in 2013 by Professor Emeritus David P Phillips (Department of Sociology, University of California at San Diego), published in the Injury Prevention Journal found that, “Even minimally ‘buzzed’ drivers are 46 percent more likely to be officially blamed for a crash than are the sober drivers they collide with.” The study concluded that there is no such thing as safe drinking and driving, and that even buzzed drivers put themselves and others at risk the moment they get behind the wheel. Preventing Impaired Driving Accidents The NHTSA’s statistics surrounding buzzed and drunk driving are overwhelming, and their ongoing public campaign efforts continue to emphasize the need for awareness throughout the country. Putting a stop to buzzed driving begins with every single driver who gets behind the wheel. Everyone can hold themselves and their friends accountable for the choice to drive buzzed. You can practice the following to prevent impaired driving accidents:
  • Always designate a sober driver before you go out. It is common for at least one friend in a group to say they are okay to drive because they are only “buzzed”. Plan ahead to avoid this situation.
  • If you do not plan ahead and designate a sober driver for your outing, at least designate someone as the decision maker - the one who will call the cab when it is time to go home. Call the cab no matter what, even if someone thinks they are okay to drive.
  • Stay put. If you plan to have drinks in a personal setting, such as someone’s home, make arrangements beforehand to possibly stay on the premises to avoid getting in a car altogether.
  • Program at least three numbers in your phone for responsible transportation following an outing where there will be drinks involved: at least one or two cab companies and one (or more) good friends you can count on and call in the event that you have had too much.

If you are injured in a buzzed or drunk driving incident, you need to contact a professional Lake County car accident attorney to protect your best interests. Call Salvi & Maher, LLP today at 847-662-3303 to schedule a free consultation.


http://www.nhtsa.gov/Impaired http://www.nhtsa.gov/nhtsa/buzzeddriving/index.html http://injuryprevention.bmj.com/content/early/2014/01/07/injuryprev-2013-040925.abstract?sid=379fb47c-59b4-4ef1-8766-466c834a46a3

Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois wrongful death attorney, Illinois car accident lawyer,The Illinois State Police report that the average college student spends more money on alcohol than they spend on books. That fact alone is enough to bring anyone’s attention to the alarming nature of drunk driving accident statistics. They also report that drivers under the age of 21 are involved in 17 percent of alcohol-related fatal crashes. Those drivers represent only 10 percent of licensed drivers in the state of Illinois, but the fatalities, injuries, and disabilities they cause due to driving under the influence are life-altering and irreversible.

Parental Involvement

It should go without saying that parents should not allow underage adults to drink alcohol, but sadly it is a common occurrence for parents to allow those under 21 to drink under their supervision at home. Some parents even go so far as to hide and defend the underage drinker when they are caught driving. Illinois already has a Zero Tolerance law in place for underage drinking and driving, but parents should be aware that the state considers it a Class 4 felony when a parent knowingly allows an underage person to consume alcohol. This type of felony can mean one to three years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000.00. If you take zero responsibility for allowing a minor to drink, Illinois State Police will enforce zero tolerance on your actions when it comes time to address the felony. Are There Any Exceptions?

The Zero Tolerance law went into effect in January of 1995 and strictly enforces its ban on underage drinking and driving, resulting in jail time and driver’s license suspension, regardless of the circumstances surrounding the drunk driving incident. The only exception for minors who consume alcohol and are found driving is for those who drank the alcohol as part of a religious service or ceremony. One other exception is taken into consideration for minors who ingest certain prescribed medications that contain alcohol.


Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois wrongful death attorney, Illinois car accident lawyer,Chicago area residents likely remember hearing stories of a catastrophic wrong way collision in May 2014. A 23-year-old man under the influence of alcohol drove his SUV the wrong way on Lake Shore Drive in the early morning hours of May 1st and crashed into a taxi, forever impacting two families’ lives. The collision killed one young law student and caused severe injuries to another, leaving him struggling to survive.

Unfortunately, tragedies like this are becoming an alarming trend in Illinois. Another wrong way collision on Lake Shore Drive in 2014 killed one and injured three, a former police officer was sentenced to prison for a 2013 wrong way crash that killed two young men, and a wrong-way driver injured six people on I-94 in November 2015. Just this March, yet another wrong way accident on the Bishop Ford killed one man and injured two others. Aside from driving in the wrong lane at high speeds, these auto accidents have something else in common: drivers under the influence of alcohol.

Fatal Consequences


Contact a Lake County Vehicle Accident Attorney Who is Ready to Help You

If you or a member of your family has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, contact our office. Call 847-662-3303 to set up a free initial consultation at one of our four convenient locations. There is no risk because we only collect fees if you collect compensation. With offices in Libertyville, Waukegan, Richmond, and Chicago, we represent clients in Lake County, Cook County, DuPage County, and McHenry County.

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