It’s commonly known that riding a motorcycle can come with added safety risks. Luckily, there are several safety measures motorcyclists can take to ensure they have a safe ride. One of these measures may include knowing where the most dangerous intersections in Chicago are located and how to avoid them when possible.
Most Dangerous Chicago Intersections
The Active Transportation Alliance (ATA) created a list of the top 10 most dangerous intersections in Chicago. This list was made using the city’s crash data including the rate of motor vehicle collisions, serious injuries, the number of traffic deaths that occurred, car accidents, and other crash factors. They include:
- N. Milwaukee Ave/W. North Ave/N. Damen Ave (Wicker Park)
- S. Cottage Grove Ave and E. 79th St (Chatham)
- N. Cicero Ave and W. Chicago Ave (Austin)
- N. Dearborn St and W. Ontario St (River North)
- S. Ashland Ave and W. 63rd St (Englewood)
- N. Cicero Ave and W. Madison St (Austin)
- N. Halsted St/N. Lincoln Ave/W. Fullerton Ave (Lincoln Park)
- N. Elston Ave/N. Western Ave/W. Diversey Ave (Logan Square/Bucktown)
- N. Ashland Ave and W. Cortland St (Bucktown)
- S. Martin Luther King Dr and E. 63rd St (Washington Park)
N. Milwaukee Ave/W. North Ave/N. Damen Ave (Wicker Park)
With the convergence of three major streets, this is one of the most dangerous intersections in Chicago. The area is popular among pedestrians, cyclists, and public transportation, increasing the potential for motorcycle accidents and conflicts between different modes of transportation.
S. Cottage Grove Ave and E. 79th St (Chatham)
Located in the Chatham neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago, S. Cottage Grove Ave and E. 79th St can be dangerous for motorcyclists passing through due to their high traffic volume and inadequate traffic management. The area may experience congestion and delays, leading to frustrated drivers who may engage in reckless behaviors.
N. Cicero Ave and W. Chicago Ave (Austin)
Situated on the west side of Chicago, this intersection marks the heart of the Austin neighborhood. The intersection’s wide roads and multiple lanes can lead to speeding and aggressive driving behaviors.
N. Dearborn St and W. Ontario St (River North)
Situated in the River North neighborhood, this dangerous intersection is at the heart of Chicago’s downtown art and design district. With two wide one-way streets, this frequently congested intersection can be especially risky during peak commuting hours. Motorcyclists who pass through should drive defensively and be especially aware of bicyclists and foot traffic.
S. Ashland Ave and W. 63rd St (Englewood)
This intersection lies in the Englewood neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago and serves as a commercial center, offering essential services and local shops that contribute to the neighborhood’s vitality. Nearby is the Ashland/63rd Green Line stop, increasing foot traffic in the area.
N. Cicero Ave and W. Madison St (Austin)
Found in the Austin neighborhood on the West Side, this intersection’s strategic location provides accessibility and convenience for both residents and commuters passing through the area. But the result of that is often heavy traffic flow and frequent congestion. This dangerous intersection is a major transportation corridor, with multiple lanes. Motorcyclists should stay alert when driving through.
N. Halsted St/N. Lincoln Ave/W. Fullerton Ave (Lincoln Park)
Known as the “Depaul” or “Lincoln Park” intersection, this vibrant area is located near DePaul University. This intersection can be hazardous for motorcyclists due to its complex layout and heavy congestion. Sudden lane changes, limited visibility, and impatient driving behaviors can contribute to a higher risk of accidents.
N. Elston Ave/N. Western Ave/W. Diversey Ave (Logan Square/Bucktown)
Located at the border of the Logan Square and Bucktown neighborhoods, this intersection is a bustling crossroads connecting two vibrant areas. The convergence of three major streets can lead to confusion and congestion, requiring drivers to navigate multiple lanes and make quick decisions. Additionally, the area is frequented by pedestrians, cyclists, and public transportation, making it essential for drivers to remain alert and aware of their surroundings.
N. Ashland Ave and W. Cortland St (Bucktown)
Situated just under the I-90 overpass, this intersection is one of the most dangerous intersections due to the area’s complex layout, including offset intersections and irregular angles. Additionally, with the presence of cyclists, pedestrians, and buses, motorcyclists should be attentive and cautious, particularly when making turns or changing lanes.
S. Martin Luther King Dr and E. 63rd St (Washington Park)
Located in the Washington Park neighborhood on the South Side, this intersection is significant in Chicago’s African-American history. The intersection serves as a reminder of the neighborhood’s cultural heritage and plays a vital role in community events and celebrations.
5 Tips for Motorcycle Riders
- Avoid Dangerous Intersections. The first and most obvious tip for motorcycle riders who may encounter a dangerous intersection is to avoid them all together. Finding new ways to arrive at your destination that do not require you to cross these intersections may help keep you out of harm’s way.
- Take extra precautions while driving at night and on the weekends. Illinois crash data shows that car accidents and other motor vehicle crashes are more likely to happen at night and on the weekends. Motorcyclists who go out at these times should take extra precautions.
- Observe Posted Speed Limits. Riding a motorcycle is a thrilling experience. The light-weightiness of the vehicle can create a sense of freedom. However, it also makes speeding much easier to do. Observing the posted speed limits can help motorcyclists stay safe on the road and give them time to react to any potential hazards. This is especially important at any of these intersections that are sure to be filled with these hazards.
- Take a Motorcycle Safety Class. On a motorcycle, defensive driving skills can go a long way in keeping the rider safe from an intersection-related crash. Taking a motorcycle safety class can teach you how to anticipate the moves of other drivers on the road, avoid driver’s blind spots, look out for bike lanes, and other important
- Be Cautious of Traffic Signals. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 42% of fatal motorcycle crashes were caused by a driver making a left turn while the motorcyclist continued straight ahead. It’s extremely important for motorcyclists to be cautious of traffic signals and avoid running red lights.
What to Do When a Motorcycle Accident Happens
Having the knowledge of which roads and intersections are most dangerous in Chicago can help motorcyclists stay safe. At Disparti Law Group Accident & Injury Lawyers, we want every motorcyclist to have a safe ride without incidence. But when accidents do happen, we are here to help. You may be owed compensation for the harm caused by someone else’s negligence.
If you or a loved one have been in a motorcycle accident, the first thing you want to do is call the police and get immediate medical attention. If your accident was someone else’s fault, your medical records would be important when seeking compensation for your injuries.
Then, call a lawyer, preferably before speaking with insurance companies. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney at our firm would have the skills and expertise required to negotiate with insurance companies, collect evidence, and if needed, fight in court. We offer FREE case reviews. Call (312) 600-6000.