Pedestrian safety should be a concern for everyone in Illinois because at one point or another, everyone is a pedestrian. Some people may walk more than others but for the vast majority of residents, it is necessary to travel by foot at some time in the day, whether it is walking to work, walking a child to school, or even just walking to your car. Despite the fact that so many people travel by foot, the safety of pedestrians is not as discussed as it should be, even though there were nearly 3,000 pedestrian accidents in Chicago alone in 2010.
When a pedestrian is involved in an accident and the pedestrian in injured, the laws in Chicago and in Illinois may provide that victim with the right to seek a recovery against the individual responsible for the crash. In some accidents, it can be the driver of a car or the owner of the vehicle that bears legal fault. In others, a company, employee, or even a city can be liable. As each accident is unique, it is a good idea to speak with a personal injury lawyer following a crash so that you can learn about the legal options following your collisions.
Unfortunately, many accidents involving pedestrians turn tragic when a pedestrian loses his or her life. That was the case in Joliet over the weekend when a 62-year-old man was struck by a fleeing driver. The victim in that crash lost his life due to the severity of his injuries.
Police are still investigating the incident and trying to determine what caused the collision between the man, who was walking home on Center Street shortly before midnight, and a car that was the in the area. Police believe that the victim was hit by the car and that he was dragged some distance before the driver of the car sped off from the scene. The driver did not stop to see if the victim needed help and did not call authorities to report the accident, in violation of local and state laws.
Police are asking for any information regarding the accident as they continue to look into the factors surrounding the crash on Saturday night. They are also trying to determine whether an altercation at a neighboring bar involving the victim may have preceded the crash.
Fleeing the scene of an accident is a traffic and/or criminal offense but it still happens often in a pedestrian collision. In fact, in 2010, 18 percent of all fatal pedestrian crashes involved a hit-and-run driver. Often these individuals are apprehended some time after the collision, and when they are identified, they usually face greater charges because they failed to remain at the scene.
Even if a fleeing driver is never identified, a pedestrian who is hurt in an accident or the victim’s surviving family members may be entitled to seek relief for their damages through the use of a civil claim. If you have been hurt or your loved one has lost his or her life, call the lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. today and let us provide you with a free, no obligation telephone consultation. We are standing by 24 hours a day to take your call and everything discussed will remain confidential. If you prefer to meet with us in person but you are too injured to travel to our offices, we will also provide you with a free in-home or in-hospital consultation. If an accident has left you injured, make sure your rights are protected. Call us today and let us help you.
Prior Blog Entry:
Fatal Pedestrian Accident in Chicago Leads to Criminal Charges, Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published February 25, 2014.
Joliet Police Searching For Suspect In Deadly Hit-And-Run, by Pamela Jones, CBS Chicago, published February 25, 2014.