Labor Day weekend is not only a time for Illinoisans to travel to other places, but it’s also an opportunity for people from other states to visit the Land of Lincoln. Thousands of tourists were in Illinois over the three-day holiday weekend to commemorate the unofficial start of autumn. Unfortunately, there was one out-of-state motorist who did not have an enjoyable time in Illinois.
Around 11:45pm on the night of Saturday, August 31, a 49-year old man from Tucson, Arizona was riding his motorcycle south on South Commercial Street in the Saline County city of Harrisburg. The man reportedly slowed for the intersection with East Sloan Street, but a car traveling behind the bike failed to stop in time and rear-ended the motorcycle. The Arizona man was thrown from his bike and had to be transported to a local hospital with serious injuries. The 20-year old Stonefort man who was driving the car was subsequently arrested and charged with driving under the influence of drugs.
From the information given, it appears that the younger man will be found liable for the motorcycle accident and the subsequent injuries to the 49-year old man. Regardless of the outcome of the criminal charges facing the DUI suspect, the victim can still choose to file a personal injury lawsuit against the Stonefort man. This would allow the motorcyclist to receive reimbursement for the medical expenses he has incurred, including ambulance charges, hospitalization expenses, treatments and medications, and physical therapy sessions. If the 49-year old is forced to miss work in Arizona because of the motorcycle accident, this suit could allow him to collect any unearned wages resulting from absenteeism. And a jury could award the plaintiff monetary damages for pain and suffering as well (and possibly punitive damages if the Stonefort man is convicted on the DUI charges).