Each time a driver operates a motor vehicle in Illinois, they must exercise a duty of reasonable care toward others in or near the roadway. This duty applies to car drivers as well as to motorcycle operators and others. Moreover, the duty is extended to one's own passengers -- whether in a car or on a motorcycle. Preliminary reports suggest that a car driver may have breached that duty, causing or contributing to a motorcycle passenger being killed in an accident.
The fatal crash occurred on a Saturday night in June in Sangamon County, although the approximate time of the accident was not disclosed in an article reporting the motorcycle passenger's death. She passed away in an Illinois hospital about three and a half days after the tragedy. The specific nature of the injuries she suffered was not described, though it was reported the operator of the motorcycle escaped serious injury.
Authorities have noted that the car driver apparently did not see the bike. Further investigation will likely reveal more information regarding the cause of the collision. While it is not known if criminal charges are contemplated in the wake of the crash, that is a possibility in these types of circumstances. The relationship, if any, between the motorcycle operator and his passenger was not disclosed.
As the 48-year-old woman's family gathers to make final arrangements and mourn her passing, they will also be interested to learn precisely why their loved one was killed in an accident. Authorities will want to discover why the car driver did not see the motorcycle, and they will also consider if any Illinois laws were broken. Regardless, the victim's estate has the right to file and litigate a wrongful death lawsuit against any party whose negligence is deemed to have been a causal factor in the crash.
Source: foxillinois.com, "Woman Dies After Weekend Motorcycle Accident," June 14, 2013