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Cell Phone Use May Have Cause Death of 70 Year Old Chicago Man

Regina Cabrales has filed a suit in the Cook County Circuit Court against Araceli Beas, claiming she had been driving while updating her Facebook page when she fatally struck Cabrales' father in South Chicago. Beas' mother denied the allegations regarding her daughter in court February 15, claiming Beas posted the message when she was two miles away from the scene of the crash.

On December 27th 2010 Cabrales' father, 70 year old Raymond Veloz had gotten out of his vehicle to exchange insurance information with another driver after they had had a minor accident. According to the police report, 21 year old Beas was temporarily blinded by the sun when she struck Veloz with her vehicle.

Veloz was pronounced dead later at the hospital. Beas received a ticket for failing to avoid striking a pedestrian. Cabrales' lawyer commented that he needed to analyze the timing mechanisms in both cell phones to prove his client's allegations.

Distracted Driving In Illinois

In 2010, the Illinois State Police pulled over 7,800 drivers for cell phone and texting violations, resulting in nearly 1,000 tickets. In 2009 cell phone distractions were the primary or secondary cause of almost 1,300 crashes, more than a 9% increase from 2008.

Illinois prohibited texting, emailing or browsing the internet while driving January 1st of last year. To celebrate the one year anniversary of the legislation, the state launched the "Drive Now. Text Later." campaign January 1st 2011.

The goal of the campaign is to educate Illinois citizens about the dangers of texting while driving and to notify the public that it is illegal to do so. A poll of Illinois Tollway customers found that 40 percent did not know that it was illegal to text or email while driving.

Illinois has also banned all cell phone use (hand-free or otherwise) for drivers under age 19 and for all drivers in school zones and construction or maintenance zones. In Chicago, drivers may only use hands-free cell phone devices.

If you have been injured or have lost a loved one to a distracted driver with a cell phone, contact an experienced personal injury attorney immediately. An experienced attorney can assess your case and help you get the compensation you deserve.

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