3 lessons for IL car accident victims from recent texting driver case

Distracted driving accidents can be deadly for pedestrians. Proactive steps can help reduce the risk of a tragic crash.

The case comes out of Ohio, but is one that could happen anywhere. It involves a young woman, only 24, driving her vehicle when she has an urgent need to use her phone to text. It is not yet known if she was dealing with an emergency or if she was simply checking in with friends. Regardless, the split second of time the driver took to check her phone led to tragedy.

At the same time she was checking her phone a group of teens were walking along the side of the road. The driver's vehicle veered a bit while she was distracted and she struck the group. She ran into three teens while she was checking her texts. The accident was so severe that two of those teens, both 14 year-olds, died as a result of the injuries. The third victim, a 15 year-old boy, is battling severe injuries.

It is tempting to think that these kinds of things will not happen at home; that our loved ones will not be impacted by such tragedy. Unfortunately, we cannot make such promises. However, we can take proactive steps to reduce the risk of becoming a victim to this type of accident. Three examples include:

  • Avoid distractions. It may seem like common sense, but it is important to be aware of your surroundings to reduce the risk of getting struck by a vehicle. Pedestrians should avoid distractions. If you need to send a text, stop walking.
  • Stay visible. Increased visibility can decrease the risk of an accident. AAA recommends taking an extra measure that falls into this step: make eye contact with the driver. This can help to ensure that the driver really sees you.
  • Cross wisely. Crosswalks are there for a reason, use them. It is not wise to cross the street in between cars or in the middle of the block. Use the crosswalk to help better ensure your safety.

Even though it is illegal in Illinois for drivers to operate an electronic communication device like a smartphone or mobile computer while driving, these types of accidents are not uncommon. Those who are injured or who lose a loved one due to this type of auto accident can hold the responsible party accountable through a personal injury lawsuit. If successful, the suit can result in monetary awards to help cover costs like medical bills and lost wages as well as potential pain and suffering awards.

Legal counsel can build a case that provides evidence to support the claim, better ensuring you receive the compensation you deserve.

  • Foundation
  • Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  • Illinois State Bar Association
  • American Association For Justice