Police are investigating whether alcohol played a role in a deadly head-on collision between a fast-moving car and a Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) bus in the early morning hours of May 7 on Chicago’s West Side.
The Chicago Tribune reports that four people died and four people suffered injuries in the crash, which happened near 6 a.m. in the 2600 block of West Madison Street in the East Garfield Park neighborhood.
Police told The Tribune that the 27-year-old driver of a Buick LeSabre approached the bus at “a high rate of speed” when he lost control, hit a parked car and slammed into the bus.
Witnesses told ABC7 that they heard tires skid and “a loud boom” when the crash occurred. Residents emerged from their homes and tried to pull people from the burning vehicle before the Chicago Fire Department arrived.
— ABC 7 Chicago (@ABC7Chicago) May 7, 2017
The driver of the Buick died in the crash, leaving behind a young daughter. His three passengers died as well in the head-on crash, including two sisters: A 25-year-old mother of three children and a 22-year-old mother of two children who was pregnant at the time of the crash. The third victim was a 23-year-old woman.
The Tribune reports that emergency responders took the CTA bus driver and three passengers to Rush University Medical Center and Presence Saints Mary and Elizabeth Medical Center for treatment of “non-life-threatening injuries.” The hospitals listed two of those people as being in “serious condition,” and the two others as being in “good condition.”
According to The Tribune, police reported that they found alcohol in the Buick, but they did not state whether it was in open containers or where they found it within the car. The police also conducted toxicology tests, which is standard procedure when fatal accidents occur. It may be several weeks until the police lab returns the test results, the newspaper states.
As Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) statistics show, alcohol continues to be a leading factor in deadly crashes in our state. During a recent five-year span (2010 to 2014), 307 people died each year, on average, in Illinois in alcohol-related crashes, including 253 people killed each year, on average, in accidents involving drivers with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher.
The lawyers of Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. help car accident victims and their families in Chicago and throughout Illinois with pursuing personal injury and wrongful death claims, including cases that involve suspected drunk driving. (In 2009, our firm obtained a $33.2 million personal injury verdict on behalf of a drunk driving accident victim which remains the largest verdict in Lake County history.) We will continue to closely monitor the investigation of this fatal accident.
To learn more about one’s legal rights and options after you suffered injuries or lost a loved one in a car accident in Illinois, contact us by phone or through our online form. We provide free, no-obligation consultations.