On May 12, 2019, 7 year-old Lexi Hanson was struck by a pickup truck while riding her bicycle near Geneva Avenue and Courier Avenue in St. Charles. The alleged driver, 42 year-old Brian Quartuccio, fled the scene on foot before turning himself in the following day. Authorities charged Quartuccio with failing to report an accident with injury and driving with a revoked license, in addition to operating an uninsured vehicle and failing to reduce speed to avoid an accident.
On October 8, 2018, Hinigo Olvera, 67, struck and killed a pregnant woman near Lake Street and Park Avenue in Streamwood, Illinois at 7:30 p.m. Authorities say Olvera, who previously faced a DUI charge in 2013, was under the influence while driving his truck when he hit Aries Cobian, age 29, who was helping her cousin push their broken-down car along Lake Street. Cobian was 12 weeks pregnant at the time of the crash.
On August 14, 2018, Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a new law that changed texting-while-driving citations to moving violations, even if the driver is a first-time offender. This change will go into effect on July 1, 2019. Currently, first-time offenders would only receive a non-moving violation.
On July 29, 2018, around 2:00 p.m., a semi-truck crashed with a passenger car, driven by a teenage woman, at the Randall and Hopps roads intersection in Elgin, Illinois. Elgin police report that the woman made her left turn from southbound Randall Road towards eastbound Hopps Road. The semi-truck, driven by a 57 year-old Wheeling man, did manage to sound its horn but could not avoid impact. Authorities pronounced the woman dead at the scene, but they have not released the identities of the drivers or if traffic tickets were issued.
On June 18, 2018, around 7:10 p.m., a Pace bus crashed with a passenger car on Boughton Road and Winston Drive in Bolingbrook, Illinois. Bolingbrook police are still investigating the cause of the crash, but the police reported that the bus struck a tree due to the crash. The bus driver became pinned between his seat and the tree, but was eventually freed by first responders. Authorities have not released the identities of the drivers, or if anyone was cited.
As the weather heats up, more riders will jump on their motorcycles and hit the road. With the increase of motorcycle riders on the roads, there is also an increase in the amount of crashes that occur involving motorcycles. The summer months of June, July and August are when most motorcycle crashes happen, and Saturdays are the most dangerous days to ride. Motorcyclists are more vulnerable on the road and are more likely to be injured or killed than car occupants. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health, motorcycle crash injuries are most common among young men on rural roads in the summer. Drivers of cars need to be extra cautious this summer to ensure the safety of motorcyclists. Motorcyclists are entitled to the same rights and safety protections as drivers of cars.
11 people were injured when an ambulance T-boned a minivan at Galena Boulevard and West Street in Aurora, on May 16, 2018. The crash occurred around 4:00 p.m. when the ambulance, headed west on Galena Boulevard with the lights and sirens activated, collided with the minivan headed south on West Street.
On March 19th, the first pedestrian death as a result of a driverless car occurred in Tempe, Arizona. Arizona has been a strong proponent of the driverless technology. It has quickly cut regulations and opened its public roads to driverless cars in an attempt to lure driverless car manufacturers such as Uber, Lyft and Waymo over its borders. Driverless cars have been praised as being safer than their human-operated counterparts. For instance, driverless cars take out the "distraction element" that often affects human drivers. One does not have to worry about a driverless car being distracted by a fluffy dog on the side of the road, or even worse, being under the influence of any intoxicating substance. Moreover, the driverless cars strictly adhere to the rules of the road. Driverless cars come to a complete stop at stop signs and when the traffic light turns "yellow," the driverless cars immediately slow down.
In Antonicelli v. Rodriguez, the Illinois Supreme Court found that a Cook County judge was correct in allowing the Defendant, Daniel Rodriguez, to settle for the limits of his policy, $20,000, and to not allow the driver of a semi-truck and his companies that were also involved in the crash to force him to pay more.