Abels & Annes

Chicago pedestrian accident lawyer settles case at mediation

An Illinois pedestrian injury attorney at Abels & Annes has reached a $95,000 settlement on behalf of one of our clients.

The claim arises out of a truck vs. pedestrian collision which took place in Chicago on June 18, 2009 at approximately 6:54 a.m. There was plenty of light, the road was straight and flat and visibility was good.

The defendant was driving his truck northbound on Monticello approaching Leland in Chicago, Illinois. This is a quiet residential neighborhood. The trucker had a stop sign for northbound Monticello at Leland and stopped. The was walking eastbound across Monticello in the marked pedestrian crosswalk. He had crossed almost the entire street and had crossed in front of most of the defendant’s truck when he suddenly accelerated and struck the pedestrian. The front end of the truck, on the passenger side, struck our client on his right side. The plaintiff was fully within the marked crosswalk when he was struck.

The force of the impact threw the pedestrian to the pavement. He had an immediate onset of back pain, neck pain and shoulder pain.

The Chicago Police Department responded to the scene of the accident. The truck driver was issued traffic tickets for failing to yield the right of way to a pedestrian in a crosswalk and for failing to exercise due care to avoid colliding with a pedestrian. The at fault driver later pleaded guilty to his tickets in traffic court.

The trucker failed to keep a proper lookout, failed to remain stopped until it was safe to proceed, and failed to exercise due care for the safety of those in the area, including the Plaintiff.

Following the collision our client had an immediate onset of back pain, neck pain and shoulder pain. He was transported from the scene of the collision by ambulance to Swedish Covenant Hospital.

At the ER the plaintiff complained of back, neck and shoulder pain. A history was taken, he was examined and diagnostic testing was performed. X-rays showed some loss of disc height in the lumbar spine and straightening of the lordotic curve of the cervical spine. He was initially diagnosed with lumbar and cervical strain. He was instructed to stay off work for a couple of days, prescribed anti-inflammatory and pain medication and instructed to seek follow up care after discharge.

Over the next couple days the plaintiff’s condition worsened and his back pain started radiating into his right leg. Due to his increasing pain and discomfort he saw follow-up treatment with an orthopedic physician on June 22, 2009. The doctor prescribed pain medication and recommended therapy.

Our client started therapy in June, 2009. Initially his main complaints were of low back pain radiating into his entire right leg and neck pain. The pain was exacerbated with movement. His pain was especially bad with sitting and activities such as putting his shoes and socks on. A course of therapy was prescribed to address his injuries. He continued to treat with the therapist over the next several months. Despite this ongoing treatment he did not experience any significant relief of his injuries.

Due to his ongoing complaints the pedestrian sought follow up treatment from another orthopedic physician. His first appointment with the doctor was in July, 2009. His main complaints were of back pain radiating into his right leg since being struck by the truck. After a history and physical examination, the physician ordered a lumber MRI.

The MRI revealed that the plaintiff suffered herniated/bulging disks at L3-4 and L4-5 which pressed against the L4 and L5 nerve roots and a herniated/bulging disk at L5-S1. Due to the nature and extent of his problems, the physician referred him to a pain specialist and to continue with therapy.

He continued his therapy and went to see a pain specialist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. An initial epidural steroid injection was performed at the L5-S1 level in July, 2009.

Despite a short period of relief from his symptoms, his low back pain radiating into his right leg flared up requiring him to seek care at Northwestern Memorial Hospital’s emergency department. At Northwestern a repeat epidural injection was performed at the L5-S1 level in August, 2009.

After the second injection his condition improved for a period of time. However, once he ended therapy his low back pain radiating into his foot flared up. Due to his increased pain and discomfort he sought further follow up treatment.

His doctor ordered a course of physical therapy, use of a home electro-muscle stimulation unit and another set of injections. Epidural steroid injections were administered on February 10, 2010, March 3, 2010 and March 10, 2010.

Following this series of injections he had an improvement of his symptoms. Since the final injection he has continued to suffer periodic episodes of pain in his lower back.

A lawsuit was filed in the case to maximize the plaintiff’s financial recovery. After undertaking a period of discovery in the lawsuit, the parties agreed to participate in a non-binding mediation at ADR Systems. There, our office was able to reach a $95,000 settlement with the defendant’s insurance carrier.

Contact our office for a free consultation if you’ve been hurt in a Chicago pedestrian vs. automobile collision. Call 312-924-7575 to speak to a lawyer now.

Other blog links:

New report on pedestrian accidents

New technology aimed at reducing pedestrian collisions