These days, parents spend a lot more time monitoring their kids than was done a generation or two ago. In Illinois and across the country, it’s common today for adults to walk with a child to school or many other places instead of letting children walk on their own. The idea is that the kids will be better protected if an adult is present while they are walking in public. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.
This was illustrated is a serious auto-pedestrian accident that occurred last week in Chicago. On Monday, June 10, around 6pm, a 65-year old woman was accompanying her 14-year old grandson on foot on South Paulina Avenue, which is a couple blocks west of South Ashland Avenue. Near 64th Street, the two pedestrians were trying to cross Paulina when a Pontiac Montana minivan driven by a 21-year old man struck them before fleeing the scene. Both the woman and the boy suffered life-threatening injuries and had to be rushed to nearby hospitals. The man was found a short time later by Chicago Police and placed under arrest on a variety of charges.
It appears that the victims have solid grounds for personal injury lawsuits against the driver of the minivan. (The parents of the boy would have to file this type of lawsuit on their son’s behalf because he is a minor.) The suits could allow the plaintiffs to receive reimbursement for medical expenses and perhaps monetary damages for pain and suffering. If the woman is still working and his to be absent from her job due to her injuries, the suit could enable her to collect compensation for the wages that she would have earned.
One more thing about this auto-pedestrian accident: it’s not clear that the 21-year old driver was at fault. If the woman and the boy were crossing outside of a marked crosswalk or away from an intersection, they would have likely been to blame. But since the man fled the scene of the incident, the hit-and-run driver is more likely to be named as a defendant in subsequent legal action.