Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog

April 21, 2014

Fatal Chicago Crash Now Believed to Be Alcohol Related

IMG_1250.jpg Driving under the influence can be deadly to anyone on the road. Often, it is someone who is not impaired but simply in the wrong place at the wrong time that suffers due to the reckless conduct of an intoxicated driver. Every year, thousands of drunk driving accidents occur in Chicago, leaving many with serious injuries or even causing some people their lives. When this happens, the law steps in and allows the victims of a drunk driving crash the ability to seek relief for their damages.

Not knowing how you will pay for your medical bills or not knowing how you will support yourself financially after an accident can make the injuries you sustained all the more devastating. Speaking with a lawyer who handles personal injury claims on behalf of victims of car accidents may help you understand whether you are entitled to payment, including compensation for lost wages and pain and suffering, if you have been hurt.

Police in Chicago responded to an accident on Saturday morning in the local lanes of the Dan Ryan Expressway near its merger with the Skyway. When they arrived, they found a vehicle collided with a divider off the road's surface that served to separate the two expressways. Police believe that the driver of the car, a Chevy Impala, attempted to veer away from the Skyway and to remain on the Dan Ryan when he lost control and collided with the barrier. Four people including the driver were in the car at the time and all three passengers were injured. The front seat passenger, a 22-year-old male, suffered extreme trauma and died as a result of the crash. The other two passengers received medical treatment but their current conditions are not clear.

When police arrived, they noticed open liquor containers in the vehicle. According to police, the driver, a 29-year-old male, allegedly admitted to drinking prior to driving and reportedly said he'd been drinking up to the point that the group got into the vehicle around 3:15 am. Laboratory tests reportedly showed the driver had a blood alcohol content of .223, nearly three times the legal limit of .08 in Illinois.

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April 17, 2014

12-Year-Old Killed in Accident with Semi Truck

IMG_3520.jpg In many cases, pedestrians have the right-of-way, meaning that vehicular traffic must respect a pedestrian's right to cross the street or otherwise travel within the rules of the road. But every year, drivers in Chicago and elsewhere across Illinois fail to respect the rights of pedestrians and instead place these walkers in a dangerous position, often causing an accident. When an injury to a child occurs, it is important to realize that the child and his or her family members may be entitled to relief. Often, a child can recover for losses including pain and suffering, emotional harm, and scarring while a parent or guardian may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses incurred as a result of the crash. Speaking with a personal injury lawyer who handles cases involving children and minors may help you understand the legal implications of an accident and whether you are entitled to relief.

In the event that a victim of a crash is killed, the victim's surviving family members may have a claim for their losses, though no amount of relief can ever provide fair and adequate compensation in those cases. While compensation cannot erase the loss, it can help ease some of the financial burden that often follows a collision.

Police in Whiting, Indiana are still sorting through the facts of a tragic accident yesterday that cost a 12-year-old boy his life. At this time, it appears that the boy was trying to cross Indianapolis near 119th Street when a semi truck approached the area, traveling northbound. The truck struck the boy and according to one eye witnesses then fled the scene. Police were called to respond and so were emergency medical personnel but unfortunately, the boy's injuries were too severe and he was pronounced dead.

Based on an eyewitness description, police located the truck and the individual believed to have been driving it at the time of the impact. The driver was apprehended and questioned but it is not clear what charges the driver will face, if any, in this crash. Police have noted that the investigation is ongoing at this point and that it may take some time to sort out the events that led to the impact and that cost the young boy his life.

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April 10, 2014

Pedestrian Killed in Chicago Crash with Pickup Truck

003.jpg The time of year does not have much effect on the presence of pedestrian traffic in Chicago. While the spring and summer months may come with an increase in the number of walkers, pedestrians can be seen hitting the streets in any month, walking to and from work, heading to school, or even running errands.

Pedestrians have many rights and responsibilities under the laws in Illinois and they must follow each of them. Failing to do so may place an individual at risk of a pedestrian accident occurring. But in the majority of accidents between a vehicle and a pedestrian, the vehicle bears some or all of the responsibility. Failing to yield the right-of-way, failing to notice a pedestrian, or driving in an area marked exclusively for pedestrian traffic are just some of the ways drivers are often at fault for a pedestrian collision.

When a driver errs or acts negligently and causes a pedestrian accident, the victims of that crash may be entitled to relief for the damages they sustain. Often, damages include incurred expenses like medical and surgical bills as well as other damages like pain and suffering endured. Speaking with a personal injury lawyer who represents pedestrians in Chicago may help you understand whether you have a valid claim for your damages and whether you are entitled to relief.

Police responded to a collision in East Garfield Park on the city's west side on Tuesday night. When they arrived, they determined that a pickup truck and a pedestrian collided, leaving the pedestrian with critical injuries. Emergency personnel transported the pedestrian, a 33-year-old man, to Mount Sinai Hospital for treatment but his injuries were too severe and he died early Wednesday morning.

At this time, officials believe that the victim was crossing the street near the intersection of Van Buren Street and Pulaski Road when a pickup truck approached the area. The truck was driven by a 38-year-old man who police say did not have a valid license at the time. The truck driver allegedly failed to yield to the pedestrian and caused the collision.

The driver of the truck reportedly received citations for failure to yield, driving on a suspended license, and driving without insurance for his role in the crash.

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April 7, 2014

Chicago Adding 20 Miles of Bicycle Lanes in 2014

bike%205.jpg Chicago has one of the greatest bicycle presences in the nation but also one of the highest rates of bicycle-related accidents. As cyclists continue to use the streets as a means of transportation, they face a very real risk of being struck by a car, potentially leading to serious injuries or even the death of the rider. To combat this risk, Chicago has taken steps to increase the safety of cyclists and motorists, especially in the congested areas downtown. Some streets have seen additional bicycle markings while others are now controlled by bicycle traffic signals.

When a collision involving a bicycle occurs, the victims of those accidents may be entitled to relief for their damages. A personal injury lawyer can help you understand whether you may be able to recover for your medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses you were forced to incur due to your accident. In many cases, recoveries can be possible against an at-fault driver or even against the bicyclist's own insurance company, depending on the facts of the collision itself and any official investigation that may have occurred afterwards.

Though many efforts have been expended in recent years to make the streets safer for bicycles, there is still a long way to go. Recognizing this, officials in Chicago announced plans to add an additional 20 miles of protected bicycle lanes throughout the city with the idea that collisions will be less likely to occur if bikes and cars are in segregated, separate areas of the street.

The plans for upgrades include five miles of bicycle lanes separated by bollard-style posts to prevent bicycle traffic from entering lanes designated for motor vehicle transit and vice versa. An additional 15 miles of bike lanes designated by street surface painting will be added during the spring and summer of 2014. This phase of alterations are planned to occur on Broadway between Montrose and Foster, on Harrison between Desplaines and Wabash, on Lake Street from Austin Boulevard to Central Park Avenue, on California between August Boulevard and North Avenue, on Halsted between 26th and 31st, and on Stony Island between 56th and 63rd Street.

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April 3, 2014

2 Car Crash in Des Plaines Leaves Several Injured

IMG_0235.jpg Car accidents happen every day in Chicago. Some are caused by speeding, others by ignoring a red light or a stop sign. Some are caused by poor weather conditions. In 2011 alone, the Illinois Department of Transportation noted over 281,000 vehicular accidents across the state. With such a large number of car accidents, chances are that most people who live in Illinois have either been involved in a recent collision or know someone who has.

When vehicles collide, there is almost always damage done to one or more of the vehicles or to anything, like a building, retaining wall, or guard rail that is struck by a car. But in addition to property damages, car accidents bring the very real possibility of causing serious injuries to those drivers and passengers involved. When a car accident in the Chicago area is caused by the negligence of one or more drivers involved and people suffer injuries in the crash, those victims may be entitled to relief for their damages. Often, seeking relief can help a victim pay for expenses caused by the crash including medical bills and time missed from work as well as enabling a victim to obtain the compensation deserved for things like pain and suffering. Speaking with a lawyer who handles car accident claims in Chicago may help you understand your legal rights if you have been hurt in a crash.

Police in Des Plaines responded to a report of a collision between a van and a car yesterday morning near the intersection of Wolf Road and Jarvis Avenue. Emergency crews also responded to the scene and noted that four people had been injured in the crash, with one person trapped inside a vehicle. Officials were able to remove the trapped victim with the help of tools to pry apart a portion of the vehicle which reportedly had been heavily damaged in the collision. All four victims were assessed and were transported to hospitals in Chicago, Arlington Heights, and Park Ridge for treatment.

At this time, police are still investigating why the two vehicles collided and whether negligence on the part of one or more drivers contributed to the collision. As their investigation continues, it is possible that tickets may be issued.

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April 2, 2014

3 Members of Chicago-Area Family Killed in Phoenix Car Accident

405.jpgDuring this time of year, many families in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs pack up and head on a trip for spring break. Public schools are generally on vacation for at least a week, giving families an ideal opportunity to take kids someone away from the city to enjoy another town or another state. Many people choose to travel by car when they take a vacation because it can offer a convenient and affordable means of transit. Driving also can provide families with flexibility in the event that a last minute trip becomes a possibility.

The majority of families who drive for vacation make it to their destination and back without any problems, but unfortunately, that is not the case for everyone. Each year, families are involved in car accidents when they are on a driving vacation, potentially leaving those involved with injuries or even claiming the lives of some family members. When these tragic accidents occur, the victims of those car crashes may be entitled to relief for their damages. Speaking with a personal injury lawyer who handles Chicago cases may help you understand the legal implications of your accident and whether you have a valid claim for your injuries.

Police in Arizona have confirmed that three people killed in a crash on Friday were members of a family from Lincolnshire. A fourth member of the same family was involved in the crash but survived with critical injuries.

Police believe that a man, woman, and their two children, ages 16 and 9, were traveling westbound on Route 160 in the general direction of the Grand Canyon when a truck traveling eastbound approached. The truck was being pursued by local police after a report was made that the truck was driving in an erratic manner. Route 160 in the area is a two lane highway which kept police approximately 1.5 miles behind the truck as they continued their pursuit, which is believed to have begun some 25 miles earlier. The truck crossed the center line for reasons not yet known and struck the vehicle driven by the victims in a head-on collision while both cars were still on Route 160.

The 16 year old and both parents, ages 50 and 42, in the car were killed in the accident as were two occupants of the truck, who have not yet been identified. The 9-year-old is expected to survive but the extent and permanency of her injuries are not known at this time.

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April 1, 2014

NFL Bengal Orson Charles Arrested in Road Rage Incident

IMG_1250.jpg Congested traffic, roadway construction, aggressive driving, speeding, and weaving in and out of lanes are some of the most common triggers of road rage among drivers, both in Chicago and across the nation. Everyone has the ability to get frustrated or annoyed while behind the wheel but it is up to each individual driver to control their emotions and drive in a safe, reasonable manner. Failing to do so and giving in to an upsetting situation is often what leads to a road rage accident.

Road rage is difficult to measure as it is usually combined with other factors to lead to and cause a crash. Officials generally distinguish road rage as a type of particularly aggressive driving and is characterized as an assault with a car or other deadly weapon. In many states, road rage is not simply a traffic offense but rather is a criminal violation that can lead to a range of punishments, including incarceration.

When an aggressive driver causes an accident, that driver may face liability for his or her actions. In addition to any tickets received by the driver, a civil claim can be brought by the victims of the accident in an attempt to obtain adequate compensation for any and all damages inflicted. These claims can help an accident victim receive payment for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering following a crash. Speaking with a personal injury lawyer in the greater Chicago area may help you understand whether you have a valid claim for your injuries.

Police in Kentucky confirmed that an arrest was made in a road rage incident Monday night in Madison County shortly before 8:00 p.m. Police received a call from a motorist on I-75 in the area saying another driver had cut off the motorist and flashed a handgun several times in the motorist's direction. With a description and location of the suspect vehicle, police pulled over the car and searched it. The police reportedly found a handgun inside a purse in the vehicle, leading to an arrest of the vehicle's driver. Authorities have confirmed that the driver was Orson Charles, a member of the Cincinnati Bengals team in the NFL. He faces at least one charge of wanton endangerment and was held on $5,000 bond.

Charles was drafted by the Bengals in 2012 during the fourth round. He was arrested and charged with driving under the influence approximately one month before the draft, an incident that allegedly caused some NFL teams to worry about the potential for future off-the-field issues with Charles.

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March 31, 2014

Bicyclist Seriously Injured in Chicago Crash with SUV

1674.jpg Over the last decade, bicycling has become increasingly popular in Chicago with many riders choosing bicycles as a primary means of transportation. Under the laws of Illinois, bicyclist have the right to ride in the streets with motorized traffic but must obey all laws that also apply to vehicles. Similarly, vehicular drivers must realize the rights of cyclists to ride in the roads and must respect those rights as they would the rights of other drivers.

Ideally, bicyclists and motorists would share the road harmoniously and in a safe, efficient manner that allows every to get to their destinations without incident. But unfortunately, hundreds of bicycle accidents occur in Chicago every year, and many of them leave the cyclist with serious, or even fatal injuries. When an accident is due to the negligence of one or more individuals involved, the victims of that crash, whether they are cyclists, pedestrians, motorists, or passengers, may be entitled to seek relief for their damages. Often, this means bringing a civil claim to recover for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Speaking with a personal injury lawyer can help you understand whether you have a claim for your injuries and whether you are entitled to relief.

Police in Chicago have confirmed that a collision between a cyclist and an SUV occurred late Sunday night at the intersection of West Addison Street and North Milwaukee Avenue. Around 11:30 p.m., police believe that an SUV was traveling northbound as it approached the intersection. Intending to turn left at the intersection, the driver began to turn the vehicle when a collision with a bicyclist present occurred. While not clear which direction the cyclist was traveling, police believe that the SUV may have been at-fault for the crash and have issued the driver a citation for failing to yield the right-of-way before turning. The investigation into this incident is ongoing as police continue to review the facts of the collision.

Emergency crews responded to the scene of the collision and transported the cyclist to an area hospital with injuries that were described as critical. The cyclist's current condition and the nature of the injuries sustained are not known at this time, nor is it clear whether the driver of the SUV was injured.

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March 28, 2014

CDOT Worker Injured After Falling from Chicago Bridge

IMG00004-20110504-1246.jpg Workers in Chicago may face a number of threats while on the job every day. Different professions have different risks but the laws that protect workers are the same: if you are hurt on the job, you may be entitled to relief. It does not matter if you work in construction and with dangerous equipment or whether your job takes place in an office, sitting at a desk. Employers in Chicago are required to provide safe working environments and when you are injured on the clock, a workers' compensation claim may be available to you.

Speaking with a personal injury lawyer may help you understand whether you have a valid claim for your injuries and whether you are entitled to compensation for time missed from work, injuries, and pain and suffering. In many cases, a lawyer can help you understand whether you have other claims in addition to a workers' compensation claim due to your on-the-job injury.

Though any worker can become injured, some types of employees are more likely to suffer injuries than others. Among them are construction workers, assembly line employees, nurses, flight attendants, and teacher's aids. In higher risk occupations, employees may have to lift heavy objects or may come into contact with hazardous substances. Jobs like construction often involve heavy machinery and active work sites that can contain a number of threats if not properly maintained.

Authorities confirmed yesterday that a Chicago Department of Transportation employee was injured after he fell from a bridge in the north Loop. The employee was working on the Randolph Street bridge with several other employees shortly before 12:00 p.m. when he fell into a hole near the bank. The bridge was raised at the time for routine spring maintenance and the hole housed the weights of the bridge used for raising and lowering the driving surface of the street.

The worker had to be removed from the hole and emergency crews transported him to Northwestern Memorial Hospital for evaluation and treatment of his injuries. Though expected to survive, his injuries were described as serious to critical as a result of the fall, which officials estimate was approximately 15 feet.

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March 26, 2014

Suspected Drunk Driver Apprehended after Driving Car on Police Department's Lawn

20130912_144836.jpg Drunk driving accidents are a serious problem in Chicago and across Illinois. These collisions can leave the drivers and passengers involved with serious injuries, and in the worst cases, victims can be killed due to the actions of a drunk driver.

Though nothing can undue these tragic accidents, the victims of drunk drivers may be entitled to relief for their injuries. Speaking with a personal injury lawyer who handles car accident cases may help you understand whether you can recover for your medical and surgical expenses, lost wages, and the pain and suffering you have to endure. These claims can be available to accident victims regardless of whether a drunk driver is charged for his or her actions and even in many cases where an at-fault driver flees the scene of a crash and is never located.

In an unusual instance, police in Northbrook have reported that an intoxicated driver was charged after he drove onto the Northbrook Police Department's lawn around 10:00 p.m on Saturday. The driver claimed he was heading to the police station to report harassing phone calls but he was unsure where to park, leading him to accidentally drive onto the lawn where his car became stuck. Officers believe the man was under the influence of alcohol at the time and they arrested the man, charging him with driving with a blood alcohol content in excess of the state limit, 0.08.

Reportedly, the man denied being intoxicated but did confirm that he consumed two beers earlier in the evening. He supposedly claimed that he intended to go to the gym with his son after stopping at the police station but that the incident prevented him from doing so.

Fortunately no collision occurred and no one was injured in this incident but for thousands of people in Chicago every year, that is not the case. They may be left in need of medical assistance due to the recklessness of a driver who chooses to operate drunk.

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March 24, 2014

Blue Line Train Derails at O'Hare and Strikes Platform, Injures 30

Millions of riders use the CTA trains to travel around Chicago every year. Some use the train system daily to commute to work while others use it only occasionally or even just as tourists during their stay in the city. Most people who use trains in Chicago do not think about a potential accident while they are on board, instead believing that those responsible for the trains will act in a safe and prudent manner.

But Chicago train accidents happen every year and many of them result in injuries to passengers or others involved in the crash. Some accidents are due to the weather and others are due to negligence on the part of motorists. In some cases, the employees responsible for the train itself bear the blame for a collision occurring. When a train accident leaves a victim with injuries or claims the life of someone involved, the victim or the victim's surviving family members may be entitled to seek relief for their damages. Speaking with a personal injury lawyer can help you understand whether you have a valid claim after an accident and whether you are entitled to relief.

O'Hare Airport regularly ranks as one of the busiest airports in the nation, often serving more individual planes each year than any other in the country. Many people entering and exiting the airport use public transportation including the CTA's Blue Line train which ends and beings at the airport. Several platforms allow multiple trains to be located at the station at any time and the platforms end at an area with escalators that take patrons to the airport's terminal, usually without incident.

This morning, a Blue Line train entering the station at O'Hare derailed and jumped a platform, continuing forward and striking an escalator. The train's first car scaled a portion of the escalator and pulled the subsequent cars with it, causing a massive collision that left at least 30 people on board injured. Emergency crews and local officials responded to the scene and determined that no one had been trapped underneath the train and at this time, they believe that no one except the train's passengers were injured. Those on board were assessed and transferred to four area hospitals for treatment with all victims expected to survive.

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March 21, 2014

Worker Hurt During Chicago Elevator Repair Job

099.jpg Most employees believe that they work in a safe and secure environment and that it would be nearly impossible for them to be injured while on the job. But statistically, this is far from the truth. Even jobs in fields believed to be "safe" can be responsible for workplace injuries that may require medical and surgical treatment to an injured worker. Chicago laws provide workers with protection through workers' compensation claims but these claims can be hard to navigate and can be difficult to bring successfully without a lawyer on your side.

Some workers undertake difficult and inherently dangerous tasks while on the job and these workers face a greater likelihood of suffering an injury. Commonly injured employees can be found in construction jobs, repair work, assembly lines, airline employees, teachers, and nurses. Though the risks in each of these areas might differ, the legal implications of an injury on the job are the same: a worker who gets hurt is entitled to relief under the law with very few exceptions. Speaking with an injury lawyer who handles workers' compensation claims in Chicago and the rest of Illinois will help you understand whether your accident entitles to you recover for your damages.

Officials have confirmed that a man working in Chicago was hurt on the job this week and suffered serious injuries. At this time, authorities have confirmed that the man, who was in his 20s, was working to repair an elevator in the River North section of the city. The man was in the area below the elevator known as the "pit" while other members of the repair team were stationed at other locations. Reportedly, the elevator was stopped on the second floor, above the worker, when something occurred and the elevator began to move. The elevator, which is located in an apartment building in the 300 block of West Illinois Street, struck the worker and left him seriously injured.

The fire department responded to the incident and had to remove the worker from the elevator shaft before the man could be transported to a nearby hospital. The injured employee is expected to survive though he was listed in serious to critical condition at the time he was taken to the hospital and his current status is not known.

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