Police have reported that an 84-year-old woman was behind the wheel when her car crashed through a local liquor store on Thursday. The woman reportedly hopped a curb and crashed through the front entrance of Binny’s Beverage Depot in Highland Park on Monday where her vehicle entered part of the store and came to rest between several stacks of liquor.
The woman states that she has never had an alcoholic drink in her life and that she believes her accelerator on her 1998 BMW may have stuck, causing her car to continue forward at Crossroads Shopping Center. The driver remained in her car until an employee of the liquor store helped her to safety. The crash also started a fire in the store that officials believe was fueled by the liquor itself.
Both the employee and the driver were taken to area hospitals where they were treated for minor injuries. Both are expected to fully recover and the driver has been released at this time. The current condition of the employee is not known. The store had a sprinkler system that helped keep the fire under control until fire fighters arrived. The blaze was extinguished shortly after fire officials arrived and eyewitnesses noted a large amount of smoke billowing from the building.
There has been no word on whether any customers were in the store at the time of the crash but several other employees were inside. None of them sustained any injuries but witnesses said that employees were covering their mouths as they exited the smoke-filled building. Police are still investigating the cause of the crash and it is not yet known if the driver will be cited for the accident.
Though the driver claimed that her accelerator stuck and caused the accident, that has not yet been confirmed and it is not clear whether the driver’s advanced age contributed to the crash. When a driver is negligent and causes an accident, though, the driver may face traffic charges or a civil claim for any injuries that result. The law requires every driver to act with due care and caution while behind the wheel and when a driver fails to do so, the driver breaks the law.
In a case like this, when a driver causes damages to the property of another, the driver may be forced to pay for the damages done. More importantly and often more significantly, the driver may also be responsible for paying for personal injuries caused in an accident. Victims of car accidents can bring civil claims for their medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages.
After an accident, often a victim is in shock and believes that they only suffered bumps and bruises. Many times, though, the full extent of injuries will only become apparent as time passes and may include broken bones, injuries to the neck or back, or trauma to the head. Some injuries can only be detected after swelling decreases meaning that it is impossible to address or treat some injuries immediately after an accident.
If you have been involved in an accident with an automobile, regardless if you were in another car or as a pedestrian, you may have a claim for your injuries. Call the Chicago car accident lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. today and let us provide you with a free, no obligation telephone consultation regarding your rights and your options. At Abels & Annes, we believe that your rights matter and that you deserve qualified legal representation after an accident. If you have been hurt, call us at (312) 924-7575 or toll free at (855) 529-2442.
Prior Blog Entries:
Lincoln Square Hit-And-Run Leaves Pedestrian Dead, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, published August 5, 2013.
Fatal South Side Chicago Hit-And-Run Leads to Arrest, Chicago Car Accidents Lawyers Blog, published August 1, 2013.
Woman, 84, crashes into Binny’s: ‘And I’ve never had a drink in my life,” by Gregory Trotter, Chicago Tribune, published August 9, 2013.