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IL injury lawyerNow that warmer weather is approaching and children are out of school for the summer, a lot of families will be hitting the road in an RV for vacation. RV travel can be a great way to travel and see the country without spending a fortune on hotels or plane tickets. They can also make long drives much more tolerable for young children, who may enjoy the freedom of being able to move around in the back of an RV. This type of travel does come with a few risks, however. RVs are much more difficult to drive than a standard family car. The lack of seatbelts can also present an added danger in the event of an accident. If you are hurt in an RV collision, it is important to speak with an attorney to determine whether you may be able to recover compensation.

What Are Some Common Causes of RV Crashes?

While Illinois is a bit more particular than other states, requiring an upgraded non-commercial license to drive an RV over 16,000 pounds, these licenses are typically not difficult to obtain with minimal practice. This makes it relatively easy for just about anyone to rent or buy an RV and set off on an adventure. It also makes things a little risky for anyone on the road near an inexperienced RV driver. Some common causes of RV crashes include:

  • Inexperience - For someone who has only ever driven smaller personal vehicles, operating an RV might be a challenge. Inexperienced RV drivers may not be familiar with things like how long it takes to stop such a large vehicle. They may lack familiarity with the controls. It may be harder for them to judge how fast they can safely negotiate a turn.
  • Distraction - Children who are securely buckled up in the back seat of a car or SUV can create a significant distraction for the adult trying to drive. Children who are loose and running around in the back of an RV can be even more distracting. The same may be true of friends vacationing together. An RV driver cannot afford to get distracted - a very minor mistake can cause a very serious crash.
  • Drowsy driving - You have likely heard someone joke that they need a vacation to recover from their vacation. Travel, even travel for pleasure, can be very tiring. Parents, in particular, may be exhausted by the end of an RV trip. Driving while very tired can be just as dangerous as driving drunk.

If you were injured in an accident with an RV, it is important to speak with an attorney as soon as possible.

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IL injury lawyerFor many Illinois residents, the winter season is an opportunity for skiing, sledding, riding a snowmobile, and other activities in the snow. However, many of these activities have a significant risk of injury or death. Snowmobile accidents kill an estimated 200 people every year and approximately 14,000 people are injured in snowmobile accidents annually. If you or a loved one were hurt in a snowmobile accident, you may be able to bring a personal injury claim for damages. You may be eligible for financial compensation for medical expenses, lost income, and more.

Inexperience and Unsafe Driving Top Causes of Snowmobile Wrecks

Snowmobiles are great for traveling in the snow or simply enjoying the Illinois countryside. However, these machines are also capable of reaching speeds of over 80 miles per hour. Snowmobile wrecks often lead to severe, life-changing injuries including paralysis.

Studies show that one of the top causes of snowmobile injuries and deaths is inexperience. Operating a snowmobile is not the same as driving a car, and some riders grossly overestimate their ability to safely operate a snowmobile. Excessive speed is another top contributor to snowmobile accidents. Riders who are racing each other or joyriding can lose control of the vehicle in a split second. Drug and alcohol use also contributes to many fatal and injurious snowmobile accidents.

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IL boating accident lawyerAs the weather heats up in Lake County, more and more people will be out enjoying the sunshine on a boat. Unfortunately, the increase in boating activity also results in an increased risk of boating injuries and fatalities. If you or a loved one were hurt in a boating accident, it is important to know your rights. You may be entitled to compensation for the damages that you or your loved one suffered as a result of the accident.

Who is Liable for Boat Accidents in Illinois?

A personal injury claim may allow for the recovery of medical bills, lost income, and other damages after a boat accident. For a successful boating accident injury claim to be possible, the injury or death must have been caused by the negligent or wrongful act of another. Some of the most common causes of boating accidents include:

  • BUI - Boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs is estimated to be a contributing factor in half of all boating accidents
  • Operator mistakes – Operating a boat takes skill and experience. An inexperienced boat operator may operate the boat in unsafe weather conditions or at excessive speeds, neglect important safety precautions, or fail to avoid collisions.
  • Inattention – Many people underestimate the importance of paying attention to their surroundings while operating a boat. Distracted boating can cause severe and deadly accidents.
  • Boat equipment malfunction – The boat operator is not always at fault for a boating accident. Sometimes, boat defects or inadequate maintenance is the cause of an accident.

The party who is liable for a boat accident may be the boat operator, the owner of the boat, the boat rental company, the company that manufactured or designed faulty boat parts, or another individual or entity.

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IL injury lawyerAll-terrain vehicles (ATVs), quads, or four-wheelers can be useful and enjoyable. Unfortunately, these vehicles can also cause severe and often fatal injuries. If you or a loved one were hurt in an ATV accident or you were hurt by someone riding an ATV, you may have questions about your legal rights. Are ATV accidents treated the same as car accidents? Do ATV riders have to carry insurance? Will I be compensated for my medical bills after an ATV collision? The answers to these questions will depend on many different factors, so it is important to speak with a skilled injury attorney for individualized guidance.

16-Year-Old in Lake County Suffers Traumatic Brain Injury in ATV Incident

In January of this year, a 16-year-old Lake County girl suffered a traumatic brain injury after being ejected from an inner tube being pulled by an ATV. She was unresponsive for several days following the accident but is now awake and relearning how to function. Although this ATV incident was atypical in that it involved a person being towed behind the vehicle, ATV accidents causing injury or death are not uncommon. In 2018 alone, there were over 81,000 ATV accidents in the U.S. Over a quarter of these accidents involved children.

Liability for an ATV Accident

In Illinois, ATV drivers are required to have liability insurance. This insurance, like typical auto insurance, is intended to compensate an injured person in the event of an accident. However, many ATV owners do not carry enough insurance to adequately compensate someone for injury-related losses. In cases such as these, a personal injury case may be filed against the at-fault party. The party who is liable for ATV injuries may be an ATV driver, the owner of the property on which the accident occurred, the manufacturer or designer of a defective ATV part, or another party. Fault may also be shared between the injured person and another party. Fortunately, in Illinois, individuals who are partly responsible for their own injuries may still be entitled to partial compensation for damages if they are less than 51 percent at fault for the accident.

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Lake County boat accident lawyersAs warmer weather approaches, many Lake County residents are starting to get their boats ready to take out on the water. Whether it is on a privately-owned boat or a commercial vessel, nothing quite compares to the feeling of bobbing with the waves and feeling the sun on your face. Unfortunately, not all boat operators are as careful as they should be. Boat accidents that result in severe injuries and even death occur every year in the United States. When a person is injured or killed as a result of a negligent boat operator, the injured person or surviving family may be entitled to financial compensation.  

Inattention and Alcohol Use Lead to Serious Boat Accidents

Just over 630 people lost their lives in boating accidents in the U.S. in 2018, and thousands more were injured. Sadly, many of these accidents could have been prevented if the boat operator was acting in a safe, responsible way. Many people falsely believe that they do not need to be vigilant while operating a boat because they assume that they can react to any dangerous situation in time to prevent an accident. However, Illinois boaters and passengers are seriously hurt every season due to improper lookout and operator inexperience. Boat accidents are also common when boats are travelling at excessive speeds. 

By far, the leading contributing factor in serious boat accidents is alcohol use. Boating under the influence is against the law in Illinois, but many boaters do not take this law seriously. When operator negligence is the cause of a boating accident, the people hurt in that accident may be able to receive compensation for their damages through a personal injury lawsuit.

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