This is the time of year where the vast majority of Illinois children are out of school. That means most of them will be spending time playing video games, engaging in outdoor activities, or hanging out with their friends. And they won’t be spending any time worrying about much of anything – especially school.
Unfortunately, one teenager may have cause to worry this summer because of an auto accident that she caused. Back on Wednesday, May 15, a 17-year old girl was driving in the Chicago suburb of Park Ridge near Advocate Lutheran General Hospital. She was traveling eastbound on Dempster Street and tried to make a left turn onto Luther Lane. But she struck an oncoming Toyota Highlander, which was pushed into a light pole that toppled over and landed on top of a Mercury Villager that was waiting at a red light on southbound Luther. Neither the teen nor anyone in the Mercury was hurt, but the driver of the Toyota was taken to Advocate Lutheran with non-life threatening injuries.
The teenager was cited by Park Ridge police for failing to yield the right-of-way, which likely means that she tried to turn left on a solid green light (instead of a protected green arrow) and did not wait for oncoming traffic to clear. So it appears that the 17-year old girl will be held primarily or completely responsible for the auto accident and the injuries to the driver of the Toyota.
As a result, the teen may spend her summer worrying about being targeted in a personal injury lawsuit filed by the victim. Because she his under 18 years of age, any such lawsuit would name the girl’s parents as defendants. The plaintiff could collect reimbursement for medical expenses, which may include hospitalization charges, treatment and medication costs, and physical therapy sessions.