Lyons Township High School Adding Traffic Light & Pedestrian Crossing

The Chicago Tribue reported this week that the town of Willow Springs has decided to add a traffic light and pedestrian crossing at Lyons Township high school located on Willow Springs Road.

Western Springs officials say the traffic light will make the area safer for motorists and pedestrians for both park and school traffic. A pedestrian crossing has also been installed at Mason Drive.

“It’s been a long time coming, and it is good to finally see this come to fruition,” said Village Trustee Sheila Hansen.

This isn’t the first safety initiative in Willow Springs recently. They have worked alongside the town of Lagrange to improve safety for drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists.

An intergovernmental agreement was signed by the two villages, the park and school districts back in November 2012 that outlined the need for the project. A traffic corridor study was also conducted from 47th Street to Adventist La Grange Hospital between the villages of La Grange, Western Springs and the school district at a shared cost of $18,500, La Grange officials said.

The total cost of the project was listed at $416,000 after bidding last fall, according to budget numbers from the village of La Grange, with $376,000 in federal Surface Transportation Program grant funding, and a $90,000 grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. The project includes reconfiguration of internal roadways and drop-off and pick-up procedures within the LTHS campus, alignment of the driveway entrances at Denning Park with the proposed signal at LTHS, installation of east-west sidewalk through Denning Park to connect to existing neighborhood sidewalk system, an enhanced crosswalk at Mason Drive and Willow Springs Road, and enhanced school speed zone signs with flashing yellow beacons, according to the proposal approved by the village of La Grange, the lead agency for the project.

It is good to see these suburban communities working together, which will hopefully prevent future accidents. I think it is interesting to see that this initiative did not include any talks about red light cameras or speed cameras that, as we all know, are scattered across Chicago.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a Chicago car accident or Chicago truck accident, then call Chicago personal injury attorney, Aaron Bryant, for a free legal consultation at 312-614-1076.

Chicago Has Highest Level Of Fatal Pedestrian Accidents In Four Years

I have written on this blog multiple
times that Chicago has taken significant steps to make streets safer for
pedestrian walkers. The city has installed speeder cameras near schools and
parks. The punishment for vehicles disobeying cross-walks has stiffened. Stop
signs for pedestrian cross walks haven been installed on busy roads such as
LaSalle, Clark and Division etc… All of these steps among others have been
implemented by Mayor Emanuel since he has taken over, yet, the Chicago Sun
 reported last week that 48 pedestrians were killed in vehicle accidents in 2012. This was a sharp uptick from the previous two years and the
highest in four years.

The city needs to be asking itself
why there has been a sudden increase despite the measures taken to protect
pedestrians. “The weather was better. It was relatively mild, especially
in the winter,” Active Transportation Alliance Director Ron Burke said. “And
driving went back up for the first time in a while. … It looks like probably
more people were out walking because of the mild weather. That alone creates
potentially, unfortunately, some additional crashes.”  Others say
distracted driving is also a key factor: “People are more distracted. All you
need to do is look around and see everyone on a cell phone, texting or
listening to music and not paying attention to the road,” said Jose Ucles,
spokesman at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Chicago’s numbers
follow a national trend that shows an increase of traffic fatalities of all
types. In data from January through September — the latest available — the
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said traffic fatalities
increased by 7.1 percent over the same nine months in 2011. That represents the
largest such increase since 1975 — the first year when NHTSA started collecting
data on traffic fatalities, the study found.

As I have stated
before, there needs to be tougher penalties against those cause auto accidents while
texting and driving and especially if there are personal injuries. Without
tougher penalties, I believe that pedestrian accidents will increase or at the
very least stay at the same level.

If you or someone
you love has been injured in a Chicago car accident or Chicago truck accident,
then call Chicago personal injury attorney Aaron Bryant for a free legal
consultation at 312-588-3384 or go to the firm website at 
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Chicago Launches First Pedestrian Safety Plan

Per the Chicago
, the city will be launching its first city-wide pedestrian safety
plan. I have written about this subject numerous times on this site, and about
the effort Rahm Emanuel has taken to make the streets safer for pedestrians.
Earlier the city implemented the controversial speeding cameras located in
school zones. The city also recently installed stop signs at many pedestrian
crossings on busy streets. Last year the city enacted stiffer penalties for
drivers who ignore pedestrian cameras. 

According to the Chicago
Department of Transportation (CDOT), the goal of this initiative is to improve safety for children and seniors
around schools and parks, improving access to transit, safer
crossings at intersections and increasing space for pedestrians.

The hundreds of
recommendations include better-marked crosswalks, the establishment of
pedestrian islands in the middle of multilane streets, better signals and beacons,
and pedestrian countdown timers at crossings. Other long-term improvements
discussed in the plan include staggered midblock bump-outs on residential
streets to slow traffic.

crosswalks were among the first changes, CDOT Commissioner Gabe Klein said,
largely because the department began to weave in the new pedestrian plan in time for
already-scheduled construction projects.

The crosswalks have big
rungs across the walkway for higher visibility and are made of a reflective
material, Klein said. More than 100 such crosswalks were installed in 2012,
Klein said.

Pavement markings — on
crosswalks and stop lines for vehicles — are faded across Chicago,
and Klein said millions would be spent this year repainting such markings so
they are visible to drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists.

The overall goal by the
city is to decrease the number of pedestrian deaths to zero within ten years.
This is a lofty goal, but I take my hat off to Mayor Emanuel and to the city
for taking these initial steps to make our streets safer for pedestrians. 

If you or someone you
love has been injured in a Chicago car accident or Chicago pedestrian accident,
then call Chicago personal injury attorney, Aaron Bryant, for a free consultation at 312-588-3384 or go to the firm website at 

Study Shows Distracted Pedestrians More Like To Be Involved In Accidents

 The University of
Maryland Medical Center released an interesting study last month which revealed
that pedestrians wearing headphones are more likely to be involved in 
car accidents and train accidents than pedestrians without

research revealed that 116 accident cases from 2004 to 2011 in which
injured pedestrians were documented to be using headphones. Seventy percent of
the 116 accidents resulted in death to the pedestrian. More than two-thirds of
victims were male (68 percent) and under the age of 30 (67 percent). More than
half of the moving vehicles involved in the accidents were trains (55 percent),
and nearly a third (29 percent) of the vehicles reported sounding some type of
warning horn prior to the crash. The increased incidence of accidents over the
years closely corresponds to documented rising popularity of auditory
technologies with headphones.

Lichenstein and his colleagues noted two likely phenomena associated with these
injuries and deaths: distraction and sensory deprivation. The distraction
caused by the use of electronic devices has been coined “inattentional
blindness,” in which multiple stimuli divide the brain’s mental resource
allocation. In cases of headphone-wearing pedestrian collisions with vehicles,
the distraction is intensified by sensory deprivation, in which the
pedestrian’s ability to hear a train or car warning signal is masked by the
sounds produced by the portable electronic device and headphones.

to always be aware of your surrounding if walking around town listening to your
 ipod as you could be increasing the chances you are struck
by a vehicle. Another option is to lower the volume level enough so that you
can hear and remain aware of the surrounding traffic.

If you
or someone you love has been involved in a
 Chicago car accident or Chicago pedestrian accident, then call Chicago personal injury attorney Aaron Bryant for a free consultation at
312-588-3384 or go to the firm
 website at

Illinois House And Senate Pass Pedestrian Safety Bill

There is a good news out of Springfield this week as a new law recently passed by the Illinois General Assembly and now awaits Governor Quinn’s signature, that will give greater protection to pedestrians. The legislation that will require drivers to come to a complete stop for pedestrians and bicyclists in all crosswalks, regardless of whether they’re marked with stripes or signs or nothing at all. The bill will become law as soon as Gov. Pat Quinn signs off on it.

In mandating complete stops at all occupied crosswalks, the measure tightens up and clarifies previous laws that required drivers to stop and yield to pedestrians only when necessary.

Click here  to read the entire story from the Suburban Beacon Journal.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a Chicago car accidentChicago truck accident  or pedestrian accident , then call attorney Aaron Bryant for a free consultation  or go to the firm website at