According to data from the Illinois Deptartment of Transportation, traffic deaths rose 2% from 2012 to 2013. There were 956 fatalities in 2012, compared to 973 fatalities in 2013.
While the number of deaths increased within the year, deaths on Illinois roadways are still significantly lower than in the past. 2013 marks the fifth consecutive year that fatalities were below 1,000.
The state of Illinois has successfully implemented safety laws in efforts to reduce road fatalities. In 1985, seat belts became mandatory, and police officials were granted the authority to ticket someone for not abiding the new law. Officers could only give a ticket for not wearing a seatbelt if they pulled a vehicle over for a different violation. As of 2003, the law was updated and officers can now pull someone over and give them a ticket solely based on the violation of not wearing a seatbelt. This update in the law can be correlated to the decrease in road fatalities over the past few decades.
With more frequent seatbelt usage and proper education, the Illinois Deptartment of Transportation hopes the number of fatalities will decrease to 0 for fatalities involving cars, motorcycles, bicycles, and pedestrians.
Read the full article on traffic deaths on the rise in Illinois here.
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