A traffic accident on Chicago’s South Side has left police scratching their heads about the causes of the accident involving a city fire truck and a civilian vehicle. One potential culprit is the failure of the brakes on the fire engine. A second potential cause of the accident is negligence on the part of the woman driving the other vehicle involved in the collision.
At about 7:00 a.m., a city fire truck was headed north on South King drive with its emergency lights flashing. The fire engine struck a Mitsubishi sedan headed east on 75th Street. The female driver of the Mitsubishi was taken to the University of Chicago Hospital in critical condition. Four firefighters on the truck were also injured. Three of them had been treated and released within a few hours.
Communications from the Chicago Fire Department about the circumstances of the accident were unclear. The first message said that the accident was “intersection-related” but that the point of impact had not been located. While brake failure was one of the first causes cited by police, the exact nature of the brake failure was not disclosed. Another possible cause is the failure of the Mitsubishi driver to yield to the fire truck. This explanation depends upon whether the fire truck was flashing its lights or sounding its siren. This fact has not been verified. In addition, no one has offered a verifiable statement about whether the fire truck was responding to an emergency call.
Like many truck accidents, this one will not offer any clear answers about cause or liability until the police investigators have finished their work. Anyone who has been injured or lost a loved one in a similar accident may wish to consult an experienced personal injury attorney for an evaluation of the evidence and an estimate of the likelihood of recovering damages.