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Car accident deaths cost Illinois over $1 billion

A car accident happening on Illinois roads can be a terrifying experience. If a friend or a close family member is severely injured in a car accident, then the pain and suffering becomes a real concern. Unfortunately, the number of car collisions is on the rise with more than 30,000 individuals losing their lives in car accidents in the country each year. Statistics from a decade ago show accident fatalities resulted in pain and suffering for family members and additional losses of $41 billion in lost worker productively and medical aid. Policies can be deployed to reduce the number of deaths and injuries and also the subsequent costs.

In Illinois, the total cost of fatal car accidents is $1.32 billion. Of the total amount, about $15 million addresses medical costs with remaining $1.3 billion addressing lost work hours. Illinois can bring down the number of deaths from car collisions by taking a few measures that include enforcement of seat belt laws, a graduated driving license system for helping young drivers gain driving experience under low-risk conditions and enforcing a law that requires all motorcycle drivers to wear helmets.

Deaths from car collisions can be also be reduced by preventing car collisions due to DUI. Sobriety checkpoints and ignition interlocks for repeat offenders can be enforced to reduce the number of deaths from drunk-driving accidents. Preventing injuries after a car crash can also bring down costs. Age-appropriate child seats have been known to prevent injuries when car accidents happen.

Work loss costs are calculated by totaling average salary, fringe benefits and household work values that a deceased person would have been expected to earn or perform in his or her lifetime. The loss number is disproportionately higher for younger car victims due to their age.

Source: CDC.gov, "Cost of deaths from motor vehicle crashes," accessed on Feb.2, 2015

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