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Tips for Child Passenger Safety Week

This year, the week of September 15-21 is being recognized as Child Passenger Safety Week to raise awareness and bring attention to the topic. Many child passenger injuries are a result of improper use of car seats, booster seats, and seat belts. In 2017, one child under the age of 13 was involved in a passenger vehicle crash every 32 seconds, making the need for child passenger safety even more prevalent. To help alleviate this issue, the United States Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Ad Council have launched a series of public service ads that advertise the urgency of protecting a child’s future at each stage of their life, including in vehicles. The primary goal of these ads is to inform parents and caregivers of the correct car seat for every child’s age, height and weight, as well as making sure they are using them correctly.

During Child Passenger Safety Week in September, various communities across the country will be hosting verified Child Passenger Safety Technicians to provide free instruction on the proper use of car seats, booster seats, and seat belts for children of all ages. In addition, these technicians will be offering their services to educate parents and caregivers on how to choose the right car seat for their child, how to correctly install it and use it every time. Apart from that, they will also be discussing the importance of registering the car seat with the manufacturer and the steps one should take if their child’s car seat is recalled. The end of Child Passenger Safety Week will be concluding with National Seat Check Saturday on September 21.

Unfortunately, car crashes are the leading cause of death for children between ages 1 and 13, which makes raising awareness about the proper uses of car seats important to all, especially parents and caregivers. Between 2013 and 2017, 3,313 children under the age of 13 were involved in a fatal vehicle crash. In 2017, over 35% of children under 13 that were killed in a passenger vehicle crash were not restrained in either a car seat, booster seat, or seat belt. These statistics point to the importance of restraining your child in some sort of car seat if they are under the age of 13. Most parents have confidence in their installation of their child’s car seat, but in over 59% of these cases, the seat belt for the car seat was not correctly installed. It has been proven that car seats can reduce the risk of fatal injury in a vehicle crash by 71% for infants and 54% for toddlers. However, the mistake is often made of moving a child from a car seat to a booster seat when they are not yet at the correct age, height or weight.

It is recommended that parents carefully read and follow car seat installation instructions, for failure to do so can lead to exposing the child passenger to risk of injury or death should a crash occur. A few car seat recommendations for choosing the right option for your child include:

  • Rear-facing car seats should be used on children under the age of one.
  • Forward-facing car seats should be used once children have outgrown the rear-facing one.
  • A child should be moved to a booster seat once they have reached the maximum height or weight allowed for a car seat
  • A child should only be moved to using just a seat belt once they have outgrown the booster seat

Information about the correct type of passenger safety measures for your child and learning how to install and use it correctly can only help to reduce the number of child passenger vehicle injuries that families suffer each year. However, even when you are being cautious and taking the appropriate steps to secure your child in a vehicle, injuries as a result of a car crash can still occur. If your child has suffered an injury due to a vehicular crash, you may be entitled to compensation. Call one of our compassionate attorneys today at (217) 443-4343 to receive a free consultation and to help you through this difficult matter.


Be the Key to Road Safety With National Stop on Red Week

The month of August not only brings warm weather and the beginning of the school year, but it also marks National Stop on Red Week. August 4th through the 10th aims to promote the importance of stopping at stop signs and traffic lights. It is imperative to educate yourself and those around you on these topics in order to keep the community of Danville as safe as possible. Failing to stop at stop signs and traffic lights will not only conclude in a traffic violation or fine but it could cause serious injuries or even death.

Traffic safety saves lives. That is why National Stop on Red Week is so important. It shows us that being a safe driver is no joke and should be taken very seriously.
Because safe driving can help save lives, Danville High School students were inspired to promote safe driving tips for their Future Problem Solvers competition project. Future Problem Solvers is an international competition program that challenges students to use a six-step problem-solving method to find topics of concerns in their community. They spend time doing extensive research on a cause then develop an action plan to improve the situation they chose. These students chose to research traffic safety in honor of their late class mate D’Nija Parker. They named this project “Be the Key to Road Safety”. They competed in an international competition against 75 other teams from around the world. The team’s project received an impressive award; 3rd place in the world.

Through the team’s research, they came across what they call the “Fatal Four”. These are the four things that statistically are most fatal when driving:

  • Not wearing a seatbelt
  • Speeding
  • Using electronic devices
  • Driving while impaired

Our team asks you to help us spread the word and educate those around you about road safety and the importance of stopping at traffic lights and stop signs. Help Spiros Law promote road safety by looking out for the road signs that have been placed in five different locations across Danville. The Future Problem Solvers team designed these signs in honor of their project and their beloved classmate D’Nija. The group hopes that these driver safety signs will impact driver decisions and create safer roads not only for Danville but all across the state of Illinois.

In their research, they found that 94% of all traffic accidents are due to driver decisions or human error. Meaning that it is nearly impossible to control the actions of other people on the road. If you or a loved one find yourself victim to a reckless driver or one who has failed to stop at a stop sign or traffic light, call a Spiros Law attorney at (217) 443-4343. Our team is dedicated to getting you the compensation you are entitled too for your injuries and suffering. Our team is able to step in and mediate with the insurance companies and can help make sure that your bills are taken care of. Let us take the weight off your back so you can focus on a full recovery.


Multi-Vehicle Accident on Illinois Indiana Border

A multi-vehicle accident that occurred in the westbound lanes of the Interstate at the four-mile marker around 3:15 p.m over the weekend, resulted in serious injury. The crash was caused by a semi-truck that failed to slow down and subsequently hit several vehicles from behind. The collision created a chain reaction involving three passenger vehicles and one other semi-truck. The Vermillion County Sheriff Deputies were on attending to an unrelated vehicle fire nearby so they were quick to arrive at the scene. After investigation, it was reported that the driver of the semi, Daniel Alvarez, 53, of Peoria, Illinois, failed to slow down as the traffic ahead of him slowed and started coming to a stop which caused him to collide with a car driven by Kaleb Acuna, 18 of State Line, Indiana. The semi, driven by Alvarez, then struck a pickup truck driven by Jeremy Ramage, 44, of Union, Kentucky as well as an SUV driven by Patricia Campbell, 60, of Indianapolis. After striking Campbell’s SUV, it hit another semi driven by Kathy McCarthy, 59, of Edgewater, Florida.

The collision also resulted in some fuel leakage so the Perrysville Fire and Rescue were called to the scene.  Numerous other emergency personnel were also called to the scene for assistance, including units from Vermillion County as well as Fountain, and Warren County.

According to the Vermillion County  Sheriff’, the crash involved two semi-trucks and four other vehicles.  A third semi-truck avoided adding to the collision by sliding off the highway. It was also reported that one of the drivers and two passengers, a juvenile and an infant, were taken to a nearby hospital with life-threatening injuries. Some of the other passengers also sustained injuries, including some who were able to be treated on the scene.

Indiana State Police were called to the scene to reconstruct the accident, and it remains under investigation.

It is awful when these types of incidences, that could have been avoided, occur. At Spiros Law P.C., we are committed to working to help get justice for the people who are the victims in these, all too common, situations. We champion on your behalf and fight for you so you can focus on what important, your recovery. If you or a loved one is a victim of an accident involving a large truck, the truck accident attorneys of Spiros Law are ready to fight to get you the justice and compensation you deserve. To speak with one of our attorneys, contact our offices at (217) 443-4343.


Semi-Truck Rollover Results in Fatality

A semi-truck collision that occurred on Lower Terre Haute Road, in Edgar county just east of Midwestern Gas road. The collision, unfortunately, resulted in the death of one person whose name has not yet been released. Edgar County sheriff’s deputies were called to the scene shortly after the crash. Illinois State Police were also called to the scene and said that the victim of a fatal semi-truck rollover crash, a 24-year-old male from Paris, IL, was a passenger. They also reported that Brett Bell, also from Paris, IL was driving a Mack truck tractor along east Terre Haute Road when the truck left the roadway for an unknown reason and overturned on its passenger side, ultimately landing in a ditch. According to police, the passenger in the truck died at the scene. The road was blocked off for several hours while emergency crews transported Bell to an area hospital for non-life threatening injuries. Police also reported that neither Bell nor his passenger were wearing seatbelts. As a result of the crash, Bell is facing several charges including not having a commercial driver’s license, failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, and failing to wear a seat belt.

If you or a loved one have been put in harms’ way because of the reckless actions of a semi-truck driver call a Spiros Law attorney. You may be entitled to compensation for your suffering, medical bills, or lost wages. Our attorneys will fight for the justice you deserve so you can focus on your recovery. If you have been involved in a crash and have questions about your situation, call our office at (217) 443-4343 for a free consultation.


Danville Resident Tragically Killed In Semi Collision

I-74 is a common daily commute for many in the Danville community. As we all know, a long stretch of this drive is under construction between Bloomington and Peoria. Traffic is slowed in tight quarters often times creating dangerous road conditions. That is exactly what happened earlier this week when a crash ended with a tragic death.

A fatal accident involving two semi-trucks occurred along the construction zone on I-74. This accident took place right by milepost 117 in Woodford County. A semi-trailer had broken down while traveling eastbound on I-74. A second semi, driven by Jeffery Bryant, 48, attempted to pass the broken down semi thinking they had enough room. However, Bryant’s semi struck the other, causing a fire, resulting in the fatality. Traffic lanes on both the westbound and eastbound sides were closed while emergency crews responded to the incident. Traffic was stopped for hours. Police authorities are still investigating what lead to the collision of the two semi-trucks.

Taking extra precautions when driving around semi-trucks is imperative. Leave plenty of space between you and the truck near you. Semi-trucks have air breaks which means the room that they leave is needed to slow the truck down. Never cut directly in front of a truck. When you do this, you are invading the space the driver needs to slow the truck successfully.

Never drive directly next to the trailer. It not only blocks your view of the road but you may be riding right in the trucks blind spot which can be dangerous for both parties involved. If the truck blows a tire, you may be directly in the line of fire if the tire were to exit the truck. If the tire were to hit your car it may cause you to lose control and run off the road.

Never drive directly behind a truck. Many do not realize, but when you do this the driver cannot see you. It not only blocks your entire view of the road, but it makes the chances of running into the rear end of the trailer much greater.

Most importantly, pay extra attention. There are numerous distractions that we can fall victim too while driving. It is imperative to eliminate distractions such as cellphones, loud music, other passengers, or drowsiness. Make sure you are alert and properly prepared to drive whenever you get behind the wheel of an automobile.

In order to stay as safe as possible around trucks, we can keep all of these things in mind but unfortunately, it is impossible to control the actions of others. One small move can lead to a disastrous situation. If you or a loved one have been put in harms’ way because of the reckless actions of a semi-truck driver call a Spiros Law attorney. You may be entitled to compensation for your suffering, medical bills, or lost wages. Let our attorneys fight for the justice you deserve. If you have been involved in a crash and have questions about your situation, call our office at (217) 443-4343 for a free consultation.


National Safety Month Aims to Reduce Leading Injuries

The National Safety Council encourages everyone to observe and promote National Safety Month this June and to continue those safe practices all year round. The purpose of National Safety Month is to focus on reducing the leading causes of injury and death in the workplace, on the road, in the home, and around communities.

Avoidable injuries are the most prominent cause of death for Americans with ages ranging from 1 to 44 years old. There are numerous ways for people to stay safe and actively prevent these injuries. The National Safety Council encourages people to spread the word and educate themselves about ways to reduce the risk of work-related injuries. Approximately 13,000 American workers suffer an injury in the workplace every day due to a variety of causes.

Employers are responsible for the safety and well-being of those they employ, but employees should also take an initiative to promote their own safety. The National Safety Council makes a point to focus on a few work safety topics, which include: fatigue, drug use at work, driving, workplace violence, slips and falls, ergonomics, and overextension. While these do not encompass all the risks that employees are subject to, they are typically the most common ways that employees might potentially suffer an injury. Ways to ensure safety from these dangers in the workplace include:

  • Focusing on your wellness by getting the proper amount of sleep
  • Trying to include physical activity in your everyday routine
  • Recognizing potential hazards
  • Staying hydrated and eating enough

Ensuring a culture of safety in the workplace for protection from violence begins with having a well-trained staff. This can be accomplished through policy or training, in addition to the development of emergency action plans. Unfortunately, not all workplace hazards can be predicted, and the deadliest situations often involve an active shooter. The following precautions can help in an active shooter emergency.

Be Informed

  • Sign up for active shooter training
  • If you see something, say something
  • Be aware of your surroundings and possible dangers

Make a Plan

  • Make a plan with everyone in your office and ensure that everyone is on the same page
  • Make sure all of the exits are clear and visible

It is important to be aware of the risks that can be associated with being in the workplace. Employers should take the time to educate their employees on optimal work environment safety and how to avoid work-related injuries.  Throughout the month of June, and all year long, consider these ways to avoid work-related injuries and promote proper safety.

If you or a loved one have suffered an injury in the workplace, the attorneys at Spiros Law are here to take a weight off your shoulders. Here at Spiros Law,  we are dedicated to ensuring clients receive the proper care and attention when dealing with legal measures by addressing each matter with care. Contact our Danville office at (217) 443-4343 to speak with one of our experienced workers’ compensation attorneys and to schedule a free consultation.


What To Do If You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse

Nursing home abuse is an ongoing issue within long-term care facilities, and a recent article from the Los Angeles Times calls attention to this problem and why people should be concerned. There have been numerous accounts of reported abuse at nursing homes, but according to the article, this information has been kept from the public by government authorities. As the relaxed nature of oversight within this industry continues, many senior citizens’ well-being is put in jeopardy. More people are turning to senior care facilities, as the median age of the U.S. population rises, and many are not fully aware of the potential downsides that can occur in these nursing homes. When one places their parent or relative into a nursing home facility, they expect that they will be treated with the appropriate amount of care, but unfortunately, this is not always what is received. Approximately 400 nursing homes were cited with substandard care by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the full list is in this report, “Uncovering Poor Care in America’s Nursing Homes.”

Within these facilities, some residents experienced outright neglect, being without proper nutrition, suffering in unsanitary conditions, as well as physical abuse, sexual assault, and premature death. The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care, an advocacy group, points to the fact that the information not being reported in a timely manner and that it should be concerning for people who are considering placing their loved one in a nursing home facility. Thankfully, Medicare’s Center for Clinical Standards and Quality has now reportedly made it their top priority to focus their attention on ensuring that nursing home quality of care is improved. To guarantee that your loved one will be looked after properly, the article suggests searching for a qualified nursing home on the CMS’ Nursing Home Compare site or searching for other online rankings and information. They also recommend seeking advice from a health care professional, and to schedule a visit to the homes you and your family are interested in.

None the less,  it is still important to know what one should do if they suspect their loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse. Signs of nursing home abuse can include unexplained injuries, unresponsiveness, a sudden change in weight, obvious signs of poor hygiene, or out-of-the-ordinary behaviors. According to the law, management of nursing home facilities is required to address concerns you may have regarding the care of your loved one. If you suspect that abuse has occurred, it is recommended that you:

  • Discuss the situation with your loved one: Although they may not want to admit it or may feel uncomfortable, it is important to ask them if they were harmed, feel threatened, or have experienced abuse or neglect.
  • Document everything: This can include taking photographs of any injuries or alarming marks, saving medical reports, keeping relevant documents, and writing down everything that has occurred.
  • Talk to nursing home administrators: If you suspect abuse has taken place, it is imperative that you speak with an administrator of the nursing home and discuss your concerns. With this, it is advised that you remain calm and conversate about what can be done to improve your loved one’s well-being.
  • Talk to a nursing home abuse lawyer: Lawyers are equipped to help you pursue a civil lawsuit to recover compensation if your loved one has been suffered injuries. Compensation can aid you in paying bills for medical expenses, emotional distress, or pain and suffering.

If your elderly loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse and has suffered emotional or physical injuries, the attorneys at Spiros Law, P.C. are experienced in handling cases of these matters. Our attorneys handle each case with compassion and understand the pain and suffering you and your family have experienced. Contact us at (217) 443-4343 to discuss your situation with one of our nursing home abuse attorneys.


July Brings New Changes to Distracted Driving Penalty

July 1st marks the inauguration of new distracted driving enforcements. Illinois state representatives and law enforcement officials are tightening the reigns on the citations given when a driver is in violation of distracted driving laws. Using a cellphone while driving is prohibited in the state of Illinois however, just a warning will no longer be issued on the first offense. A moving violation will be given along with a fine of $75. For every offense following the fine will increase as follows, 2nd offense $100, 3rd offense $125, and $150 for all future offenses. This law is not only limited to cellphones but will apply to all electronic communication devices. These new rules are being put into place to help us prevent fatal automobile collisions by eliminating distractions and focusing on the road at all times.

Distracted driving is any activity that takes your attention away from driving. With about 1,000 reported accidents, 9 people die each day from distracted drivers.

What are the types of distracted driving?

There are three main types. Visual, manual, and cognitive. Visual, includes anything that could cause you to take your eyes off of the road. Manual, meaning anything that would cause you to take your hands off the steering wheel. Cognitive, anything that would cause your mind to drift. Texting while driving is especially dangerous because it combines all three types of distraction. When you send or read a text message you are taking your eyes off the road for about five seconds. This is the same amount of time it takes to cover the length of a football field if you are traveling at 55 MPH. It is important to assume responsibility for our actions and implement preventative measures into our daily routines that can help protect ourselves and others. Installing hands-free devices or placing your cellphone out of arms reach will both reduce distractions and make the roads safer for everyone.

Who is the most at risk?

Teenage drivers under the age of twenty are the most at risk. This age group has the highest percentage of distraction-related fatal collisions.  In a study, 42% of high school drivers, who had reported driving in the past 30 days, reported sending a text or email while driving. Those who have reported texting while driving are more likely to drive without wearing a seatbelt, more likely to ride with a driver who has been drinking, and more likely to drink and drive. These are the types of situations these new laws aim to abolish. In the past year, Illinois law enforcement officials issued 15,150 distracted driving violations.

Distracted driving is a dangerous activity and should not be taken light-heartedly. We must hold ourselves accountable but unfortunately, we cannot always be responsible for the actions of others. If you or a loved one have fallen victim to an accident due to distracted driving you may be eligible for compensation from the responsible party to help with your injuries, property damages, and emotional and physical suffering. Call a Spiros Law attorney in our Danville office at (217) 443-4343 to explore your options.


National Bike Month: Illinois Bike Laws

May is National Bike Month! This month is sponsored by the League of American Bicyclists and is celebrated all over the United States. Biking has many benefits such as being a great way to get exercise, a way to eliminate your carbon copy, and a way to allow you to save money on your daily commute. With that said, bicyclists are subjected to many dangers while on the road. Often times, other drivers fail to see them, thus not leaving them ample space to manoeuver. Fortunately, the State of Illinois has many laws in place to protect cyclists and keep them safe on roadways. Listed below are some of the laws in place in Illinois that are designed to keep cyclists safe.

Safe Passing Laws

  • Illinois requires that motor vehicle drivers that decide to pass a bicycle going the same direction must leave a safe distance, not less than three feet, between the vehicle and the bicyclist. They must maintain the distance until they have safely passed the bicycle.

Treatment as a Vehicle

  • In our state, bicycles are not vehicles according to the statute that defines vehicles. However, an individual riding a bicycle is subjected to all the rights and duties that a motor vehicle driver has. That means that bicyclists must follow the same rules that drivers do, and drivers must treat bicyclists the same way they would treat drivers of other motor vehicles.

Dooring Law

  • Under Illinois Law, no individual is able to open the door of a vehicle unless it is safe to do so, or when it can be done without interfering with a cyclist. Also, you cannot leave a door open that is in the way of moving traffic for a period of time longer than necessary.

Helmet Law

  • Our state currently has no helmet law. It is legal for all individuals of any age to operate a bike without a helmet. With that said, it is a good idea to wear a helmet, particularly if you have little experience riding a bike, as it will help avoid injuries to the head if a crash occurs.

The following laws are all in place to minimize the risk that comes with riding a bike and also to reduce conflicts between bikes and vehicles. Whether you are driving a car or riding a bike, it is imperative to follow the laws in our state in order to keep yourself and others safe. Failure to do so can result in a ticket, injuries, or fatalities.

If you or a loved one has sustained an injury as the result of a bicycle accident, you don’t have to suffer alone.  The compassionate bicycle accident attorneys at Spiros Law P.C. understand the pain and suffering you are going through and will fight on your behalf against individuals who endanger our roads. Contact us at (217) 443-4343 to speak about your unique situation today.


Future Problem Solvers unveil road safety sign in Danville

Danville High School’s Future Problem Solvers unveiled their own road safety signs in Danville on Monday. The signs are in conjunction with their project, “Project Ignition: Be the Key to Road Safety”, and their goal is to improve safety on roadways in Danville. The double-sided sign, which is located at the intersection of North Vermilion and Liberty Lane, has one side dedicated to safety in regards to passing school buses and emergency vehicles, and the other side dedicated to pedestrian safety.

Originally, the campaign was focused around “the fatal four” which includes, not wearing a seatbelt, distracted driving, driving under the influence, and speeding. However, the group decided to expand the scope of the campaign to focus on more aspects of drivers safety, giving them the opportunity to educate the community on a wider variety of safety issues.

Senator Scott Bennett attended the dedication, and he was extremely impressed with the group’s dedication to improving safety on their roadways. He stated that he was pleased to see a group of kids putting in the time and effort to make a positive change in their community.

Speaking of time and effort, placing road safety signs around the community was not an easy task for the group. It took over 18 months of planning and fundraising to make their goal a reality, making Monday’s sign dedication extremely exciting for the group. With that said, the Future Problem Solvers are not stopping there. The group will be placing signs at five different locations around Danville with the help of some local sponsors. Spiros Law is proud to be one of those sponsors.

This is not the first time the group is getting attention for their safety efforts. In 2018, the DHS Future Problem Solvers were named State Champions for Project Ignition in the community problem-solving category. In this category, groups of up to 15 students per school follow a six-step problem-solving process to help solve real community challenges. The inspiration for Project Ignition came from the death of a Danville High School student, D’Nija Parker, who was killed in a car accident in October 2016. Since then, the group has implemented many different strategies to get the attention of drivers in Danville, and they hope their new road signs will not only catch the attention of drivers but prompt them to change their behavior behind the wheel.

Spiros Law is a proud sponsor of Project Ignition. To find out more about Project Ignition and the work they have done throughout Danville, check out their Facebook page, here.