Distracted driving is one of the most common causes of auto accidents in Illinois and throughout the nation. And young drivers are probably the most likely demographic to become distracted, given their propensity for constantly using electronic devices and dividing their attention between their passengers and the roadway. So from a strict statistical standpoint, we shouldn’t be surprised when deadly crashes occur due to the inattention of teen drivers. But of course, these incidents are no less tragic simply because they occur more often.
One such incident took place last weekend in Grundy County. On the night of Sunday, April 21, a 17-year old boy was driving an Infiniti in Minooka when he reportedly ran a stop sign at the intersection of U.S. 6 and McLinden Road (a couple miles north of the Illinois River). The Infiniti was struck on the by a Honda, and a 15-year old Channahon girl in the back seat was killed. Another female back seat passenger suffered serious injuries, and the front seat passenger was hurt as well. The driver of the Honda also sustained injuries.
Since the Infiniti driver was ticketed for failing to obey a stop sign, it appears that he will be held solely responsible for the auto accident and the resulting casualties. So the parents of the Channahon girl who died may choose to file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of their daughter; and the parents of the injured victims may elect to file personal injury lawsuits as well. All of these lawsuits would name the parents of the 17-year old as defendants because he is a minor.
A wrongful death lawsuit could allow the family to collect reimbursement for burial costs, compensation for estimated future wages, and monetary damages for pain and suffering and loss of companionship. The personal injury lawsuits could reimburse the plaintiffs for medical expenses incurred as a result of the crash.