Earlier this week, a 38-year-old man struck and killed a pedestrian in the West Garfield Park neighborhood while operating his van on a suspended license. The accident occurred at the intersection of Pulaski Road and Van Buren Street around 8 p.m. Tuesday night. According to reports from police and investigators, the driver’s 2000 Dodge van was traveling northbound on Pulaski Road when the vehicle hit a 33-year-old pedestrian, who was crossing the street eastbound at the intersection (although the victim was not in the crosswalk at the time of the accident). The victim was transported to nearby Mount Sinai Hospital for treatment, but was pronounced dead just before 9 p.m., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office. The van’s driver has been cited with three violations, including failure to yield to a pedestrian, driving on a suspended license, and driving without insurance. Currently, the police Major Accidents Investigation Unit is investigating the crash further. (Chicago Sun Times)
Throughout the United States, pedestrian accidents claim the lives of more than 4,000 pedestrians every year, and are responsible for injuring approximately 70,000 additional individuals annually. Statistics also show that if you live or work in an urban area, such as Chicago, you are far more likely to fall victim to pedestrian accidents. Our lawyers believe that knowing the risk factors associated with these accidents is a crucial step in taking the necessary actions to prevent them, and with that in mind, here is a brief list highlighting who is most at risk:
Elderly Adults-Pedestrians over the age of 65 account for roughly 20% of all pedestrian accident fatalities, and 11% of pedestrian injuries. This is likely due to the fact that the weaker bones and bodies of elderly people are far more susceptible to blunt force trauma caused by these accidents.
Children-Nearly one in every five traffic accident fatalities involving children between the ages of 5 and 9 is the result of a pedestrian accident. Smaller children are much harder to see, especially when backing out of a driveway in a neighborhood. Like elderly adults, their developing bodies are also susceptible to greater injury in these accidents.
Pedestrians Who Are Impaired By Alcohol-We talk a lot about the dangers of drinking and driving, but drinking and walking is also something to be wary of, especially in the city. Alcohol-impairment, whether in the case of the driver of the pedestrian, was reported in 47% of all pedestrian fatalities. If you are going to walk home after a night at the bar, stay with a group and watch out for each other, this makes you more visible and significantly lessens your likelihood of being injured. (Center for Disease Control & Prevention)