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Can I Be Compensated for Injuries from an Accident Involving Emergency Vehicle?

Posted on in Driving Safety

Lake County personal injury attorneysWe have all been there: a fire truck is barreling down the street at high speed with sirens and horns blaring, but we are not quite sure which direction the fire truck is coming from or heading. We then see it just as we move over as required under the law, but others are not quite so lucky, as the next thing they know, is they either have been hit by the fire truck or they have hit something while trying to avoid the first-response vehicle.

Passengers in Accidents Involving Emergency Vehicle

If an accident occurs involving a firetruck or other emergency vehicle and you are a passenger in a car involved in the accident, you may have a legal right to seek compensation. How you proceed in seeking that compensation will depend on who caused the accident.

The first thing to be determined after an accident involving an emergency vehicle—after taking care of those who were injured—is whether this was a failure to yield accident or one in violation of the Illinois “Move Over” law. That finding will then determine the legal consequences to follow, if any.

What Is Failure to Yield?

Under Illinois law, the driver of every vehicle must yield to an authorized emergency vehicle, including a police vehicle, making use of audible and visual signals indicating an emergency. The driver must yield immediately as any of these vehicles approach and is required to pull over to the right and remain so parked until the emergency vehicle passes, or they are directed by the police to continue driving.

What Is the Move Over Law?

The “Move Over” law in Illinois makes it mandatory to proceed with due caution, change lanes, or reduce speed when approaching any police or other emergency vehicle stopped along the roadway. This law is also referred to as “Scott’s Law” in memory of Lieutenant Scott Gillen of the Chicago Fire Department who was killed after being struck by an intoxicated driver while rendering aid at a crash site. Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker recently signed a measure to increase criminal penalties for those who cause accidents while violating the Move Over law.  

Compensation for Accidents Involving Emergency Vehicle

If the accident involves a driver who failed to yield or one who failed to obey Scott’s law, then one thing that must be established is whether, in fact, the driver failed to yield or did not obey Scott’s law.

A Lake County Injury Lawyer Can Help

If you have been involved in a failure to yield or failure to move over accident, contact a Waukegan personal injury lawyer immediately to explore your available options. Schedule a free consultation to discuss your personal injury case by calling 847-662-3303 to set up an appointment at one of our convenient offices in Wheaton, Waukegan, Chicago, and Richmond. At Salvi & Maher, L.L.C., we collect our fees only when you collect compensation.

 

Sources:

https://www.isp.state.il.us/docs/1-163.pdf

https://www.wifr.com/content/news/Gov-Pritzker-signs-legislation-in-Rockford-to-enforce-Scotts-Law-513387861.html

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