When driving along a normally empty road in Illinois, it can sometimes be frustrating for drivers to happen upon slow traffic. This is especially true if the reason for the congestion isn’t readily apparent. Despite the unexpected delay, drivers in this situation should always keep in mind that there usually is a very good reason for the backup. Otherwise, they could wind up making a sudden or foolish maneuver which could result in an auto accident – and injuries or death to someone else.
That’s evidently what happened late last month in Kane County. Around 2:15pm on the afternoon of Thursday, June 27, a 50-year old North Aurora man was bicycling north on the side of Nelson Lake Road just west of Batavia (near the entrance to the Dick Young Forest Preserve). Several cars were traveling slowly behind the man and passing on the left one by one. But when a 2009 Nissan Rogue apparently tried to pass, the sport utility vehicle clipped the bike’s rear wheel, and the man was thrown from the bicycle. He was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital shortly thereafter. The 26-year old Evanston woman who was driving the Rogue was citied by Kane County Sheriff’s police for failing to reduce speed to avoid an accident.
It’s pretty clear that the SUV driver will be held primarily or fully liable for the bicycle accident and the death of the North Aurora man. Should they wish to do so, the surviving family members of the victim could file a wrongful death lawsuit against the 26-year old woman. A jury could award the plaintiffs monetary damages for pain and suffering and loss of care or companionship, reimbursement for hospital and burial expenses, and estimates wages that the 50-year old man could have earned in his lifetime had the rear-end collision never occurred.