Illinois residents that rely on mass transit for work commuting may do so for a variety of reasons. Some of the more commonly cited reasons include reducing monthly gasoline expenses, avoiding parking fees, staying away from the stress of commuter traffic, and promoting environmentally friendly practices.
Given these noble intentions, any mass transit accident that results in serious or fatal injuries seems like that much more of a tragedy. Unfortunately, a pedestrian was recently involved in this type of accident in the Chicago suburb of Downers Grove.
According to reports, a Metra BNSF train struck the pedestrian around 10 a.m. on a weekday morning. Although the intersection in question had crossing gates which witnesses on the scene report as being down, the gates did not prevent the man from walking around them. He was struck on the tracks and pronounced dead at the scene.
The surviving family members of the killed pedestrian may have some hard questions to ask municipal authorities, especially in light of another pedestrian accident that occurred earlier in the week just four stops east of the train station in this story. With the help of an experienced wrongful death attorney, the surviving family members can investigate whether city officials failed to take adequate precautions to prevent foreseeable pedestrian injuries, giving rise to a potential premises liability claim.
It may turn out that experts recommend a complete barrier be constructed at train stops, or that other safeguards be put in place. If a jury agrees that negligence was at play in this tragedy, the surviving family members may find a small sense of consolation in the recovery that such a lawsuit may produce.
Source: chicagotribune.com, “Man struck, killed by Metra train in Downers Grove,” Dawn Rhodes, March 19, 2013