In recent weeks Chicago area news has been filled with reports of emergency responders suffering serious personal injuries or even dying in motor vehicle and truck accidents. These individuals already put themselves in the face of danger and sacrifice their safety on a daily basis to protect and assist others, and it is a tragedy that others’ negligence must put them in additional danger on the roads.
What is more unfortunate is that this week was no different, and Chicago emergency responders again suffered injuries due to the negligence of others on the roads. According to an article by the Chicago Sun-Times, three emergency responders suffered personal injuries when a truck and an ambulance collided on Lake Shore Drive in Chicago’s South Side Woodlawn neighborhood. The individuals hurt were firefighters and paramedics.
At this time, police do not have any other details regarding this accident. What everyone should always know though is that accidents and injuries to emergency responders can be preventable if we follow the Illinois Move Over Law. Originally implemented in 2002 as “Scott’s Law,” the Illinois Move Over Law, cited in 625 ILCS 5/11-907, requires drivers of all vehicles to yield and provide the right-of-way to oncoming emergency vehicles by driving a position parallel to the right-hand edge of the road and remain in that position until the emergency vehicle has passed. Also, when approaching a stationary emergency vehicle with flashing lights, a driver must yield by making a lane change away from that emergency vehicle (on those roads with more than one lane) and reduce speed to keep conditions safe.
In previous blogs, we have discussed how Chicago’s interstates and roads are busy and filled with many vehicles driving at high speeds. However, regardless of how busy these expressways are, the law is still in place and must be followed. Interstates are not an exception to the law, but arguably are an even more important location to abide by move over laws due to their nature of high-speed drivers. When driving on interstates, drivers must pull over for oncoming emergency vehicles or significantly slow down near those that are on the shoulder of the roads. In this way, everyone is keeping emergency responder crews safe from injuries that high speed congested traffic poses to those attending to an emergency situation or accident. If we all work together and follow the move over law, lives of emergency crews can be saved, and they continue on with their jobs of saving others.
Our lawyers are passionate about advocating for those who have suffered injury at the hands of others, including emergency responders who put their lives at stake for others’ well-being.. If you have suffered personal injuries in a motor vehicle accident, or have lost a loved one, you may be able to hold that negligent driver accountable through a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit in order to obtain compensation for your injuries, lost wages, and suffering. Call our firm today for a free consultation, and we may be able to help you obtain the justice that you deserve.