Increased Enforcement Efforts To Detect Drunk Driving

On December 21, 2015 the Illinois Department of Transportation issued a press release titled “IDOT, Law Enforcement:  Drunk Driving Ruins the Holidays.” (pdf)  The press release discusses various statistics and other aspects concerning drunk driving fatalities in Illinois, and also mentions the number of fatalities over the extended Christmas weekend in 2014.  Extended enforcement initiatives, including roadside safety checks and seatbelt monitoring efforts, are also discussed.

A couple of excerpts from the press release:

In 2011, NHTSA estimates there were 278 drunk driving fatalities (motor vehicle deaths involving at least one driver with a BAC of.08 or higher) in Illinois. But in 2012 and 2013, the number increased to 322, a 15 percent increase from 2011. There was a slight decrease in 2014, with 317 drunk driving fatalities in Illinois in 2014, according to NHTSA estimates. As recently as 2007, there were 439 drunk driving fatalities in Illinois.

also:

“Driving under the influence remains a significant factor in fatal traffic crashes,” said Illinois State Police Colonel Tad Williams. “The ISP will be doing our part to help keep the roadways State of Illinois Bruce Rauner, Governor Illinois Department of Transportation Randall S. Blankenhorn, Secretary safe this holiday season by conducting extra patrols with an emphasis on removing impaired drivers. You can do your part by planning ahead to designate a driver or arrange for other responsible transportation methods. Voluntary compliance with safe driving laws is the goal for the ISP. Help make this a better holiday for everyone. Remember, Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.”

The December 21, 2015 wsiltv.com article (with video) titled “Law enforcement steps up patrol for holiday season” also discusses increased holiday law enforcement efforts and drunk driving accident statistics.  An excerpt:

Police will also be checking for seat belts more often, which is a measure Watson said helps cut down on fatalities, too.

“Wearing your seat belt is literally your last defense. This is your ability to keep yourself as safe as possible, in relationship to other people’s bad decisions,” he said.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving show each state’s statistics of fatalities involving drunken drivers for 2013.

For 2013, Illinois had 322 drunk driving fatalities, which was 32.5 percent of total traffic deaths in the state and was the same amount from 2012.

Additional details concerning these DUI enforcement efforts as well as related traffic safety measures can be seen in the IDOT press release and wsiltv.com article mentioned above.

Car Accidents Involving Medical Emergencies

As discussed in various areas of this site – including the DuPage County Vehicle Accidents page – there are many potential causes for vehicle accidents.

One of the potential causes is accidents that happen when a motorist experiences a medical emergency or other health issue in which they are no longer able to sufficiently operate the vehicle.  Often, these crashes involving medical emergencies result in (total) loss of control of the vehicle, and as a result accident injuries can be serious, if not fatal.

A recent DuPage County accident in which a medical condition appears to be involved is discussed in the December 16, 2015 Daily Herald article titled “How Lombard woman trapped in burning car survived.”

As seen in the article, the car accident, which happened on September 30 in Naperville, happened after a driver had a “stress seizure” after which the vehicle “veered off the side of Warrenville Road near Washington Street” and flipped over.

The driver, Cathy Donahue of Lombard, had to be extricated from the burning vehicle by a group of people near the accident scene.  One person in particular,  Barbara Seleski of Wheaton, was later honored for her involvement in the rescue.

Additional details and possible updates can be seen in a variety of media sources, including the Daily Herald article mentioned above.

Naperville Car Accident On Ogden Avenue

There was a DuPage County traffic accident Tuesday night (December 8, 2015) in Naperville.

According to Naperville Police, the accident happened at approximately 8:02 p.m., when a Jeep Cherokee traveling westbound on Ogden Avenue made a left-hand turn onto Fort Hill Drive.  In doing so, it struck a Toyota driving eastbound on Ogden.  According to police, the Toyota had the right-of-way at the time of the crash.

The driver of the Jeep was identified as a 32-year-old man.

The driver of the Toyota was identified as a 18-year-old man.  He suffered serious injuries in the crash and was taken to Edward Hospital in Naperville for treatment of his accident injuries.

The Naperville Police Traffic Unit continues to investigate the collision.  Those with information about this crash are asked to contact police at (630) 420-8833.

Additional details and possible updates concerning this DuPage County crash can be seen in a variety of media sources including the December 9, 2015 Chicago Sun-Times article titled “Man seriously injured in Naperville crash” as well as the December 9 Naperville Patch article titled “Teen Seriously Injured in Naperville Crash.”

Winter Weather Driving Issues

On December 1, 2015, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) issued a press release titled “‘Winter Weather – Get It Together’.” (pdf) This press release discusses safety tips and recommended actions to take in response to impending winter weather and the adverse driving conditions that will arise.

Two excerpts from the release:

“With temperatures dropping and some of the state already experiencing a first blast of winter, drivers should be aware of what they can do to keep safety their No. 1 priority,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “That means buckling up, slowing down, increasing traveling distances, and preparing to stay home if the weather is bad. By remembering the basic winter driving skills, together we can make this winter the safest one ever on Illinois roads.”

also:

“Motorists should take every precaution to be prepared when traveling Illinois roadways this winter,” said Illinois State Police Col. Tad Williams. “Reduce speed and avoid unnecessary travel during winter storms. Always check the latest weather condition information on your radio or television before heading out. Keep a charged cell phone with you whenever possible and let someone know where you’re going,”

The press release also offers a number of tips and suggested actions for safe winter driving.  Among those suggestions include driving at slower speeds in adverse weather and to be free of distractions like handheld devices.

Additional details can be found in the IDOT press release mentioned above.

Past posts on DuPage County traffic safety and driver safety issues can be seen found in the “DuPage County traffic safety” category.