The typical Chicago driver feels a degree of control over his or her safety while behind the wheel of a car. While this may be somewhat misguided considering that the actions of other drivers can, and often do, lead to car accidents in the city, there is some truth behind the thought: the safer one drives, the less likely one is to be involved in a collision. But even this small though comforting amount of control is relinquished the minute a resident or a visitor foregoes the option to drive and instead becomes a passenger in a car, truck, bus, van, train, or even on a motorcycle.
Passenger safety is complicated because the actions of any driver on the road can put that person’s rights at risk – including the operator of the vehicle in or on which the passenger travels. Not only that but others in the area, like other drivers, also can pose a hazard to passengers as their actions may cause a collision that involves the passenger’s vehicle even if the passenger’s driver did nothing wrong prior to the impact. For these reasons and others, it can be a dangerous business to be a passenger in the Chicago area.
Fortunately the laws in Illinois are on the side of passengers who are injured in an accident because the state legislature recognizes that the innocent should not be forced to bear the toll of the actions of another. Therefore, if a passenger is hurt in a crash of any kind where negligence or recklessness on the part of one or more people involved played a role, that passenger may be able to seek and obtain financial relief through the use of a civil claim for damages. This type of claim is designed to return the injured victim to a pre-injury state by providing payment for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and any other loss that results from a crash. It can be difficult to determine when a claim exists and who bears the legal responsibility for a victim’s suffering so those who have been hurt may wish to speak with a personal injury attorney to learn about and verify their options after a collision.
Tragically, police in Chicago have confirmed that a woman who was riding as a passenger on a motorcycle lost her life and that two others were injured in a collision yesterday in the far North Side neighborhood of West Rogers Park. According to reports, a motorcycle driven by a 31-year-old man was operating in the 7300 block of North Western Avenue when it collided with a passenger car traveling in the opposite direction. Authorities have not yet confirmed why the two vehicles collided.
Emergency crews responded to the scene and evaluated the 23-year-old female passenger from the bike. She was in extremely critical condition and transported to an area hospital but her injuries were too severe and she died shortly thereafter. The male operator of the motorcycle as well as the 41-year-old female driver of the passenger car sustained injuries in the accident but at this time, both are expected to survive.
The outcome of the police investigation into the incident will determine whether either driver will face charges in this matter, and if so, what charges will be brought.
If you were a passenger in a motorcycle accident or another type of traffic crash and you were injured, make sure you understand the totality of your options for your personal relief. These claims are separate and distinct from any charges brought by local authorities and they will be lost forever if you fail to act in a timely manner.
To help you analyze your options, the personal injury attorneys at Abels & Annes, P.C. have a licensed lawyer standing by 24 hours a day, seven days a week to take your call toll free at (855) 529-2442 or locally at (312) 924-7575 where we will offer you a free case consultation without obligation. If we represent you, we will advance all case-related expenses and we will never charge you a fee unless we make a recovery on your behalf. If you were hurt or if your loved one was killed, call us now and let us help you understand how you may be entitled to payment that will allow you to move beyond your collision.
Prior Blog Entry:
Chicago Car Accident Leaves 1 Dead, Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published July 20, 2015.
1 dead in Far North Side motorcycle crash, by Liam Ford, Chicago Tribune, published July 20, 2105.