Question: who do you think are the best drivers in the state of Illinois?
Obviously, that’s a pretty subjective question. But a strong argument could be made for those people who drive vehicles for a living. Since they spend more time behind the wheel per year than typical drivers, you could posit that their driving skills are better honed.
But that logic falls apart if certain outside factors are brought into the equation. Like, say, the presence of alcohol or drugs.
This may have been the case earlier this month in Chicago. On the afternoon of Thursday, December 12th around 12:30pm, a delivery driver was in the West Clearing neighborhood at the intersection of Narragansett Avenue and 63rd Street a couple miles south of the Stevenson Expressway. He was trying to turn left from southbound Narragansett onto eastbound 63rd on a green light, but an 82-year old woman was crossing 63rd in a crosswalk at the same time. The 81-year old man from Wheaton struck the woman, who died less than 15 minutes later at a nearby hospital. The delivery driver, who later claimed he never saw the woman, was later determined to have cannabis in his system after being observed by Chicago Police displaying signs of impairment. He has been charged with driving under the influence of drugs.
Regardless of the DUI charge, it appears that the man will still be held responsible for the auto-pedestrian accident because if he was turning left on a green light (not a protected green arrow), it’s still his responsibility to make sure that both vehicle and foot traffic had cleared the intersection before proceeding. If the elderly woman had a “WALK” signal when crossing the street, then she had the right-of-way. Therefore, the surviving relatives of the woman have solid grounds to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the Wheaton man.