It’s an important rule to remember: if your vehicle is disabled and blocking part or all of the roadway, it’s best to get out of the traffic flow and as far away from the car as possible. Standing by your car, sitting in your car, or standing in the roadway will increase the chances of you getting struck by another vehicle and winding up hurt or killed. One man in Illinois took this advice and managed to put himself in what might be considered the safest place possible – and he still lost his life in a car accident on 290. (See What Should I Do If I’m Involved in a Traffic Accident)
The car accident on 290 happened around 1am Saturday morning. A 42-year old Brookfield man was involved in a minor accident on 290 in Addison near Mill Road which disabled his Nissan sport utility vehicle. Because it was partially blocking the left lane of the expressway, he exited his vehicle, got to a safe spot, and called his girlfriend to pick him up. Shortly thereafter, an Illinois State Police car pulled up and blocked the left two lanes of traffic in order to protect the man’s SUV. The trooper also allowed the man to sit in the back of the squad car (which had its lights flashing) in order to keep warm while he attended to the accident on 290.Unfortunately, a Chevy Impala driven by a 32-year old Chicago man slammed into the back of the squad car. The trooper suffered non-life threatening injuries, but the 42-year old man died at a hospital about an hour later. The driver was subsequently arrested on aggravated driving under the influence charges and is being held on $1 million bond.The Brookfield man’s surviving relatives appear to have solid grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit against the alleged drunk driver. There is also a chance that the trooper or the Illinois State Police could be named as a defendant in such litigation because the victim of the accident on 290 was inside a squad car at the time of the fatal accident.