We are just past the halfway point of the year, and sadly, fatal car crashes in Illinois are on the rise. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, as of today there have been 498 fatal crashes on the roadways of Illinois, which have resulted in 550 deaths. That is 15 more deaths than this time last year. Even scarier, 103 of these fatalities this year occurred in car crashes where there was an unlicensed driver involved, and 137 involved situations where it is known that a seatbelt was either not used or used improperly. A copy of the most current statistics from the Illinois Department Of Transportation can be found by clicking here. While cars have gotten safer, more and more travel on the roadways has lead to more fatalities. When you are behind the wheel you cannot control everything to prevent a serious injury to you or those you love. But there are many things you can control: drive safely, pay attention, use seat belts properly, and keep your car properly maintained (no bald tires, inoperable lights, cracked windows, or worn out brakes). If you are sadly the victim of a car accident that was not your fault, you should contact an experienced Illinois personal injury attorney as soon as possible to make sure you know your rights. All lawsuits and claims are subject to time limits known as statutes of limitations. Failure to properly file a case within the applicable time limit will result in any injury case being barred. It is imperative that you talk to an attorney familiar with Illinois personal injury law as soon as possible after you are hurt to make sure you are doing everything you can to protect yourself.