Illinois employs a number of precautions designed to help drivers remain aware of the laws, inform them of changes to the flow of traffic and keep them from potential distractions. These precautions include dynamic messaging signs that hang above overpasses or stand posted on the side of roads.
Some have specific directions regarding detours while others convey short, witty messages with driving tips. However, as Fox 32 in Chicago reports, a recent study concerning these DMSs suggests that the signs do not reduce the number of accidents in the area and might even be the cause of a slight increase in car accidents.
Drivers, distractions and DMSs
According to the report, many drivers claim that there is a lot of unsafe driving in Illinois. Some cite safe driving habits like checking their speed and watching for red-light cameras but do not attribute any safe driving to the DMSs.
Drivers appreciate some of what the signs say—such as Amber Alerts but may feel that an overly wordy or humorous sign is distracting.
Some drivers even admit that they take pictures of the clever signs while driving, which is a potential distraction in its own right.
Signs and crashes
In the cited study, analysts found that crashes down the road of these signs increased by 1.35% during a period where the signs showed the number of traffic-related deaths.
Distracted driving and accidents
Driving safely in Chicago depends on attention, focus and understanding the rules of the road. In the event of a car accident, highlighting any potentially distracting source may provide evidence in a car accident damages or insurance claim.