The State of Safety report from the National Safety Council (NSC) contains vital information for those of us who live and work in Indiana and Illinois. In our last post, we discussed this annual research study and how it is warning us about the high risk we face for fatal accidents or what the study refers to as “preventable deaths.”
In this report, the NSC gave each state a specific grade, A – F, on its safety actions (including legislation) and its public policies regarding public safety and lessening the risk its citizens face of a preventable death in a fatal accident.
Illinois did well: it ranked second in the country for its overall ability in keeping people safe from fatal accidents.
NSC: Illinois Much Safer Than Indiana
Those working or living in Illinois had some good news here: while no state in the country achieved a grade of “A,” Illinois came close. The State of Illinois ranked as the second safest state in the nation, bested only by Maryland.
According to the State of Safety Report, Illinois did best in its road safety (72% of safety indicators in place); but it also fared well in home and community safety (51%), and workplace safety (73%). (SSR page 7).
And Illinois ranked much higher in protecting citizens from fatal accidents than its neighboring state of Indiana, according to the NSC research report. Illinois was given an overall grade of “B” while Indiana’s grade overall was “C” and the Hoosier state ranked 17 places lower in the state rankings than Illinois.
Illinois Road Safety and Dangers of Fatal Motor Vehicle Accidents
From the State Summary for Illinois, there are some considerations within motor vehicle accident fatalities that did give the researchers some concern. They include:
- No motorcycle helmets required by law.
- No law requiring young riders to wear bicycle helmets.
- No restriction against young passengers for 12 months with teen drivers.
- No law requiring seat belts on school buses.
- No Good Samaritan protections for helping unattended children.
- No law requiring rear-facing seating for children in motor vehicles under the age of 2.
- No law mandating child restraints or booster seats for children in motor vehicles under the age of 8.
For more on these road safety issues, read our discussion in:
- Helmets and Head Injuries: Construction, Football, Bicycles, Motorcycles, and More
- Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Begins Next Week: Motorcycle Safety Spotlight – CDC Argues Helmets Reduce Risk of Brain Injury by 69%
- Three Indianapolis School Bus Crashes This Morning: Safety Issues for School Buses — Should There Be Seat Belts?
- Teen Drivers and Fatal Car Accidents: High Risk in Indiana and Illinois
- NHTSA Finds More Than a Third of Children Killed in Crashes Were Not in Car Seats or Wearing Seat Belts.
Illinois Home and Community Safety and Risk of Death in House or Neighboring Areas
The NSC found additional concerns for the State of Illinois in areas where people shop, recreate, or spend time outside of working hours, either at home or in their local community. They involved:
- No law requiring smoke alarms with 10-year lifetime batteries.
- No law requiring sprinkler systems in new family homes (single family dwellings and duplexes).
- No updated pool and water facility regulations to conform with model aquatic code.
- No law requiring fall prevention strategies and education for older adults living in an age-specific (elder or senior) community.
- Pharmacists may modify prescription medication through collaborative practice agreement or protocol (dangers of opioid abuse).
- No law requiring carbon monoxide detectors in hotels or motels.
- Buprenorphine not available to treat opioid and heroin disorders.
- No law mandating prescriber education on pain management.
- No regulation of pain clinics or pain management services.
- No prescription drug monitoring program consult for first time opioid prescriptions.
For more on fatal accidents involving fires, drug overdoses, and drowning, read our discussions in:
- Indianapolis Boy Fights Death After Birthday Party Pool Accident Just as CPSC Begins Its National Pool Safely Campaign: Pools are Dangerous for Kids
- The Dangers of Deadly Carbon Monoxide: Don’t Be a Victim of CO Poisoning From Negligence of Others
- Doctors Are Writing Prescriptions for Pain Killers That Are Resulting In Overdoses: CDC Reports Physicians Are Supplying The Overdose Opioids
- Prescription Drugs & Antibiotics, Antidepressants, Pain Relief Pills – Prescribed by Doctors Are Hurting People
- Prescription Drug Deaths Are Epidemic in This Country: Pain Medications Alone Are Killing 40 People Every Day
- Fell Down, Seriously Hurt: Slip and Fall Accidents in Indiana and Illinois
- Home Fires Can Be Deadly: Illinois Electrical Experts Death In Tragic Home Fire and Explosion Is Reminder For Us All
Illinois Workplace Fatality Risks
For anyone working in Illinois, the danger of being killed in an on the job accident is lower than it is for most other states. However, even with an “A” on the NSC report card for this area of risk, Illinois still has room for improvement according to the study. Researchers found that Illinois workplace dangers remain involving the following risks:
- No mandatory safety and health program for employees.
- No State workplace safety committee law.
For more on fatal accidents that happen at work, read:
- Construction Worker’s Danger of Being Hurt or Killed on the Job: High Risk and Little Protection
- Workers in Indiana And Illinois Work in Some of The Most Dangerous Jobs in America
- More Workers Die On the Job in Traffic Crashes Than Any Other Kind of Injury: New NIOSH Goals Set to Fight this Danger
- Workers On the Job Facing Higher Risk of Injury? AIHA Warns OSHA Budget Problems and Broken Rulemaking Process Places Higher Safety Burden on States
- We Still Can’t Trust Companies to Keep Workers Safe: OSHA at Work
While Illinois does an acceptable job of addressing the dangers of fatal accidents and preventable deaths in its jurisdiction, there are still dangers present that prevented the state from earning more than a “B” overall on the NSC report card.
For instance, while Illinois does have a primary seat belt law, there’s nothing requiring seat belts to protect kids on school buses. Despite the growing prescription pain medication (opioid) epidemic, Illinois does not regulate pain clinics or pain management.
Fatal accidents involving shooters, fires, on the job accidents, as well as motorcycle accidents, truck crashes, and drunk driving fatalities are still a very big danger for anyone living or working in the State of Illinois.
Unfortunately, representing victims of these dangers and their loved ones provides its own education and concern that is independent of the NSC study and only serves to confirm its warnings. Let’s be careful out there!