Last Friday, July 11, a four-vehicle car accident along interstate 80 took the life of a 50-year-old man. The police reportedly told the man's family that some form of negligent driving may have been a factor in the accident. The police said an investigation into the car accident is currently underway, and they have not filed any charges or issued any tickets as of Saturday, July 12.
Reportedly, a Toyota SUV struck the rear end of the victim's Dodge car near Hazel Crest, resulting in a four-car collision. The 50-year-old was taken to Advocate South Suburban Hospital,` where he was pronounced dead, according to the office of the Cook County Medical Examiner. The driver of the SUV that allegedly may have caused the accident and a driver in another vehicle received non-life threatening injuries and were transported to a medical facility for treatment. The car accident shut down portions of I-80 for approximately three hours.
According to the victim's family members, the police indicated that the driver of the Toyota SUV might have been either texting or watching the GPS at the time of the accident, which elicited a strong emotional response. Reportedly, the victim's family members put out this appeal to drivers, "Please, please no texting and driving…whatever is going on can wait."
This case highlights how negligent driving is overtaking drunk driving as a leading cause of death on the road. The victims who suffered personal injury and the family of the man who died in the crash have a number of legal options going forward. Since the simple message of improving safety does not seem to be effective in reducing car accidents, perhaps hitting would-be negligent drivers in the wallet will prove to be a better deterrent.
Source: 5 NBC Chicago, ""No Texting and Driving": Family Begs Drivers After Fatal Crash" Regina Waldroup, Jul. 13, 2014