Some people who are driving on freeways and highways in Illinois worry about being rear-ended – especially if they have to slow down fairly suddenly for some reason. Regrettably, this is a common type of collision on high-speed roadways; and for a serious accident to occur, it only takes one vehicle that fails to slow down quickly enough. And sometimes, this kind of rear-end crash turns deadly.
Such was the case this weekend in Rockford. Early Saturday morning, a 64-year old woman was driving her sedan on U.S. 20 near the Rock River when she apparently slowed down for a rollover crash that had occurred in front of her. Unfortunately, a tractor-trailer traveling behind her wasn’t able to slow down in time and slammed into the back of the woman’s car. Video footage shows that the entire back half of the sedan was reduced to crumpled metal. The Rockford woman died as a result of her injuries.
Rockford Police are still investigating the trucking accident, but it appears likely that the truck driver will be held responsible for the collision and the death of the sedan driver. That means that the surviving family members of the victim could file a wrongful death lawsuit against not only the driver of the truck, but also the trucking company that operates the 18-wheeler (because Illinois law states that companies are responsible for the actions of their employees). This suit could allow the plaintiffs to collect monetary damages for mental anguish and loss of care and companionship (the woman leaves behind at least one child). The defendants may also be ordered to reimburse the plaintiffs for burial expenses and perhaps pay out compensation for any lost future wages that the 64-year old would have earned in her lifetime had the trucking accident never taken place.