It’s not uncommon for drivers to feel remorseful about their passengers getting hurt in a car crash. But it’s difficult to imagine the amount of guilt being suffered by a teenage driver whose boyfriend and younger sister are injured in an auto accident – especially if her sister were to die from her injuries.
Sadly, that’s what happened to an 18-year old woman last week on the South Side of Chicago. The woman was behind the wheel of a car on Thursday night around 8:45pm, and her 18-year boyfriend and her 13-year old sister were riding with her. As the woman was stopped to turn left from westbound Washington Boulevard to southbound Central Avenue, she was rear-ended by another vehicle. Her car reportedly spun around and wound up crashing into a gate. While both 18-year olds sustained injuries, the teen girl was rushed to John H. Stroger Hospital in critical condition. Unfortunately, she died of her injuries around 2:15pm the following day.
The car which caused the rear-end collision fled the scene, but Chicago Police took two suspects into custody shortly afterward. Charges have not yet been filed, but it appears that the driver of the fleeing vehicle will be held responsible for the crash.
The parents of the girl could file a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver of the vehicle which caused the rear-end collision, and both her sister and the 18-year old man could also file personal injury lawsuits as well. It’s very possible that a jury may order the defendant to pay for hospital expenses for all victims as well as burial costs for the girl. Damages may also be awarded for pain and suffering by the surviving family members (including the grieving teen driver), as well as lost future wages which would have been earned throughout the girl’s lifetime had she become an adult.