Posted On: March 16, 2009 by Steven J. Malman

Danville Family to Receive Almost $1.41 Million Illinois Wrongful Death Settlement from City and Truck Company After Woman Dies in Semi-Truck Accident

In Vermilion County, Illinois, the family of a 49-year-old woman who died in 2004 when the vehicle she was riding in was hit by a semi-trailer truck has been awarded an Illinois wrongful death settlement of almost $1.5 million. Judge Michael Clary approved the $1.41 award to be paid to Carlos Cunningham, the widower of Debra Jean Cunningham.

Debra Jean died on August 25, 2004 in Danville at the intersection of Lakeshore Drive and North Vermilion Street. Because the power was down in that area, the city of Danville had put a four-way stop sign in the center of the intersection.

Carlos’s Illinois wrongful death lawsuit, filed in 2005, says witnesses saw his wife leave the Village Mall and make a complete stop. As she was pulling out of Vermillion Street and about to make a left turn, however, she was struck by a Dayton Freight Lines large truck operated by Champaign trucker Henry Butler.

Carlos’s truck accident lawsuit named the truck driver, the trucking company, the city of Danville, and the Illinois Power Company as the defendants of his wrongful death lawsuit, but a judge dismissed the power company from the case. Carlos's Chicago wrongful death lawyer says the city put the stop sign, which was non-reflective, in the wrong place. He also contends that the Illinois truck driver had driven through the intersection before and he should have known to stop.

Debra Jean left behind her husband and their five children.

Failing to Stop at a Stop Sign
Failing to stop at a stop sign can lead to deadly motor vehicle accidents—especially if the vehicle that failed to stop is an 18-wheeler truck or another large vehicle that is going at a regular speed. If you are faced with a four-way STOP at an intersection, you MUST stop and then wait your turn. Even if the four-way stop system is a temporary one or one that is handheld by a construction zone worker, a police officer, or a school guard, you must yield the right-of-way to other vehicles and pedestrians until it is your turn to go. Failure to do so can be grounds for Illinois personal injury or wrongful death.

City, truck firm paying family in fatal accident, The News-Gazette, March 14, 2009

Related Web Resources:

City of Danville, Illinois

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