Accidents Involving Traffic Signal Violations
Unfortunately, drivers in Illinois and across the country do not always obey traffic signals, as important as this is. Drivers who violate traffic signals are not only breaking the law but also putting others on the road at serious risk of accidents and injuries. If you or someone close to you has been injured in an accident caused by a traffic signal violation, we can help. At Therman Law Offices, our knowledgeable Wheaton and Schaumburg car accident attorneys can meticulously investigate your case and help you seek appropriate compensation for your harm.Understanding Your Legal Rights After an Accident Caused by a Traffic Signal Violation
Traffic accidents are a leading cause of death in the United States. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that about 90 people throughout the country die each day in crashes. Traffic signals, such as red lights, are designed to safely control the flow of traffic on the road. When a motorist disregards such a signal, everyone else on the road is put in danger. In some cases, the violation of a traffic signal occurs in the form of a driver causing a crash by disregarding a turn signal. These actions can lead to serious injuries and, in the most serious cases, even death.
If you or someone close to you has been injured due to an accident caused by a driver failing to yield at a traffic signal, you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries through a negligence claim. Under Illinois law, negligence occurs when an individual causes harm by failing to exercise reasonable care. Reasonable care refers to the level of care that a reasonably prudent person would have exercised in the same situation. In the context of car accidents, the relevant question then becomes: did the driver use reasonable care? If the answer is no, and that failure led to the accident, the driver likely will be accountable.
For example, a driver who is approaching an intersection has the duty to obey the traffic light at the intersection. If a driver strikes a pedestrian because they ran a red light, for example, that driver would be liable. This is because a reasonably prudent driver would have stopped at the red light, understanding the risk created by not doing so.
In order to establish negligence, the plaintiff’s lawyer must show the following:
- The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care;
- The defendant breached the duty of care owed by violating a traffic signal, such as by running a red light or running a red turn signal; and
- The defendant's violation was a direct cause of the accident and the resulting injuries.
Each of these elements must be established before any damages can be recovered.
A number of expenses can pile up after a serious car accident. Illinois law provides that any person who is injured due to the fault of another person can receive fair compensation for any financial setback suffered. As a result, plaintiffs can typically recover medical bills, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, the cost of future care, and any other expenses arising from the accident. If you have lost a loved one in a car accident, you may be able to recover wrongful death damages from the at-fault party. Among other things, these typically include medical expenses incurred prior to the death and burial and funeral costs, as well as loss of consortium.Contact a Knowledgeable Motor Vehicle Collision Lawyer in Wheaton or Schaumburg
A distracted, drunk, or otherwise careless driver who violates a traffic signal can inflict serious, even deadly consequences. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident caused by another driver’s failure to obey a traffic signal, you may be entitled to compensation for your harm. At Therman Law Offices, our car crash attorneys are dedicated to fighting for the rights of injured people throughout Illinois. You can rest assured that we work hard to prepare each case that we take. We represent people in Wheaton, Schaumburg, Westmont, Oakbrook Terrace, Clarendon Hills, Downers Grove, Lisle, Darien, and Bolingbrook, among other cities. To understand your legal rights and options, call us at 312-588-1900 or contact us online for a free consultation.