The Potential Severity Of DuPage County Pedestrian Accidents

As seen in many DuPage County pedestrian accidents, when a person is hit by a car or other vehicle a broad range of pedestrian accident injuries can occur.  While these injuries vary in severity, many are serious in nature and often can be life-threatening.  As seen in the many DuPage County pedestrian accidents that have been summarized on this site, these accident injuries can lead to either death or various types of permanent impairments.

The “DuPage County Pedestrian Accidents” page further discusses the nature and types of injuries, as well as what steps to take if you have been hit by a vehicle.

Among the more serious types of pedestrian accident injuries are those involving head injuries.  There are many incidents in which someone has been hit by a vehicle in the Chicago area and has suffered a traumatic brain injury, which is often referred to as a TBI.  One DuPage County pedestrian accident that led to the death of a woman due to a brain injury occurred in Naperville on November 1, 2016.  That accident is discussed in the November 18, 2016 post titled “Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) In Chicago-Area Pedestrian Accidents.”

A recent pedestrian accident that occurred at an intersection in St. Paul, MN illustrates the potential severity of such a head injury as well as its long-term impact on one’s functionality.  The accident, head injury, and its impact on the pedestrian’s (Joy Hundley) health is discussed in the February 22, 2018 article titled “No prison time for man who fractured pedestrian’s skull in St. Paul drunk-driving crash.”

Two excerpts:

Joy Hundley couldn’t be at the sentencing for the man who, while driving drunk, struck her in a St. Paul intersection as he was on her way home from work last September.

Instead, the 51-year-old was at a nursing home, where she’s expected to spend her foreseeable future after sustaining a traumatic brain injury in the accident.

The mother of four daughters — her youngest is 13 — slid under Gary Thomas Schmalz’ vehicle when he struck her at the corner of Fillmore and Robert streets about 9:20 p.m. Sept. 27, 2017.


She was rushed to Regions Hospital, where she subsequently had to undergo seven surgeries to keep her alive. A portion of her skull was removed during one of the operations due to the magnitude of swelling in her brain.

Additional details regarding the long-term health impact of the pedestrian accident injuries as well as additional details regarding the accident can be seen in the article.

Drug-Impaired Driving That Occurs In DuPage County

Drug-impaired driving is becoming far more common, and it is a serious traffic safety issue.  Many accidents – some which have led to fatal injuries – have occurred in the Chicago area in which the driver was driving while drug-impaired.  Many other non-fatal accident injuries of a serious nature have occurred because of driver impairment due to drug use.

On this site, the topic of “drugged driving” – particularly as it relates to DuPage County – is discussed on the “Vehicle Accidents Involving Drivers Under The Influence Of Drugs” page.

There are many drugs that have been used by Chicago area drug-impaired drivers.  Among the most common drugs are marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and meth.  The effect these drugs have on the driver varies according to many factors, including the amount of drug used, the type of drug, how long before driving the drug was used, and whether there was “mixed” drug use.  As well, another important factor is whether alcohol was also consumed.  Due to these many factors, it can be hard to predict the impact that drugs have on the ability to safely drive a vehicle.

On March 13, 2018, CBS Chicago aired a segment (video with article) titled “Driving While High:  Just How Dangerous Is It?”   The segment discusses various aspects of driver impairment caused by marijuana usage, and how the trends in driver impairment may change if recreational marijuana use is legalized in Illinois.  As well, drug-impaired driving in Riverside is mentioned.

An excerpt from the article:

At the National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS) in Iowa, researchers are testing how people drive when they’re high.

“What we see here is the driver drifting off the roadway as they’re trying to turn a corner,” Timothy Brown said, a NADS researcher.

And the more pot they consumed, the worse they drove, according to their tests. But, unlike alcohol, where anything over .08 is considered intoxicated, there’s no magic number for pot yet.

Additional details regarding these drug-impaired driving issues can be seen in the sources mentioned above.

Downers Grove Pedestrian Accident Causes Head And Leg Injuries

There was a pedestrian accident early Saturday (March 17, 2018) morning in Downers Grove.  The accident involved a car that hit a man as the man was walking across 63rd Street.

As discussed on the “Injuries Resulting From DuPage County Pedestrian Accidents” page, there are a range of accident injuries that typically occur when a person is struck by a vehicle.  These injuries vary in severity but typically are serious in nature.  In this case, the man who was struck suffered head injuries and leg injuries.

The man was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital for treatment of his accident injuries.

An excerpt regarding the crash, from the Downers Grove Patch article of March 18, 2018 titled “Pedestrian Hit By Car In Downers Grove:  Police“:

Traffic was reduced to one lane for more than three hours as police and the DuPage County Felony Investigative Assistance Team (FIAT) worked to clean up the area and reconstruct the accident. FIAT often assists with accidents that involve serious or fatal injuries.

Additional details and possible updates concerning DuPage County pedestrian accidents and the associated injuries can be seen in the sources mentioned above.

The Danger Posed By Road Hazards In DuPage County

There are many reasons why vehicle accidents occur.  One reason is when a road hazard causes a vehicle to crash.  These crashes caused by road hazards are often serious in nature as they frequently happen at higher speeds, such as when a car is traveling on a highway or expressway.

The subject of road hazards – and the danger they pose to motorists – is further discussed on the “DuPage County Road Hazards” page.  An excerpt from that page:

Another type of road hazard is “flying tires” or wheel separations.  In these instances, a vehicle has “lost a tire” or wheel, and these present a hazard to motorists who are traveling in the path of the wheel or tire as it rolls down the roadway.

A fatal accident of that type occurred on March 6, 2018.  The accident happened on I-80 near Joliet.  The accident is summarized in the post titled “Road Hazard Causes Fatal I-80 Accident Near Joliet.”  As seen in that post, the accident happened after a wheel hub assembly, which typically weighs 100 lbs, fell of off a semi truck.  This item then traveled into the opposing lanes of the expressway and hit an oncoming SUV.  The SUV’s windshield was struck and the driver was killed.

Lawsuits can be filed over accident injuries caused by road hazards.  A fatality that occurs in an accident such as that mentioned above, if caused by the negligence of another person or party, often leads to the filing of a wrongful death lawsuit.  These lawsuits are often filed by relevant parties on behalf of the person that has died, i.e. the decedent.

The subject of wrongful death lawsuits – including the types of situations that may lead to the successful filing of a wrongful death lawsuit – are further discussed on the “Wrongful Death Lawsuits Stemming From DuPage County Accidents” page.  One such wrongful death lawsuit was filed after a Naperville accident in which a person who was walking was fatally hit by a car.

Additional details concerning these topics can be seen in the sources mentioned above.

Fatal Multi-Vehicle Accident On I-290 Near Elmhurst

There was a fatal multi-vehicle accident Thursday afternoon (March 1, 2018) on the Eisenhower Expressway (I-290) near Elmhurst.  The accident resulted in the death of one man and two people being injured.

The Illinois State Police says the accident occurred at 1:58 p.m.

While the cause of the accident is still being investigated, the preliminary investigation indicates that the accident involved three semi trucks and four other vehicles.  One of the semi trucks caught fire after the accident.

The man killed in the accident was identified as Christopher Follett, 37, of Indiana.

An excerpt regarding the crash, from the Daily Herald article (with crash scene photo) of March 2, 2018, titled “Indiana man killed in crash that shuts down I-290 near Elmhurst“:

Video by ABC 7 Chicago showed the crash centered around two semitrailers. The cab of one was destroyed by fire while its trailer remained largely intact. The semi in front of it was partially jackknifed. It appeared at least one vehicle was trapped and destroyed in between them, and another was trapped and damaged between the wreckage and the median wall on the left.

Additional details and possible updates concerning this fatal multi-vehicle accident can be seen in a variety of media sources, including the article mentioned above as well as the March 2 Chicago Tribune article (with accident scene photo) titled “Motorist killed in fiery 7-vehicle crash on I-290 near Elmhurst identified as Munster man.”

Fatal Pedestrian Accident Trends And DuPage County Injuries

Pedestrian accident trends continue to be problematical, both on a national as well as a local (Chicago area) basis.

Many statistics show that pedestrian accidents, including fatal pedestrian accidents, are at high levels when viewed from a historical basis.

On this site, various aspects of pedestrian accidents – including both medical and legal issues – are discussed on the “DuPage County Pedestrian Accidents” page as well as the “Injuries Resulting From DuPage County Pedestrian Accidents” page.  As discussed on those pages – as well as seen in DuPage County pedestrian accidents summarized on this site – accidents in which people are hit by vehicles often result in serious, if not life-threatening, injuries.  Many such injuries are fatal in nature.

In DuPage County, recent pedestrian accidents have occurred in Naperville, Woodridge, Downer’s Grove, Lisle, Darien, Warrenville, and near Burr Ridge.  As seen in the summaries, these crashes have led to many types of injuries that vary in severity.  Even for those injuries that do not lead to fatalities, medical treatment of such injuries often includes extensive hospital stays and additional care such as physical rehabilitation.

Recently the Governors Highway Safety Administration (GHSA) issued a report titled “Pedestrian Traffic Fatalities by State:  2017 Preliminary Data.”

The report discusses recent trends in national fatal pedestrian crashes, and reasons why the recent number of fatal injuries are at historically high levels.

An excerpt from the report summary:

States reported a total of 2,636 pedestrian fatalities for the first six months of 2017. Adjusting the raw data based on past trends, GHSA estimates that there were 5,984 pedestrian fatalities in 2017, essentially unchanged from the 5,987 pedestrians killed in 2016.

The report also explores potential contributors to the high number of pedestrian fatalities, considering factors including state legalization of recreational marijuana and the dramatic growth in smartphone use.

Additional details regarding the nature and trends in pedestrian accidents can be seen in the sources mentioned above.