A collision on the Kennedy Expressway left one dead and backed up traffic for hours last week in Chicago.The crash occurred Monday morning near Cumberland Avenue as traffic began to slow. A 65-year-old man in a Ford Explorer began to slow his vehicle for heavy traffic and was struck from behind by a semi truck that failed to slow or stop. The collision forced the Ford to strike a Lincoln Town Car in front of him, causing a second impact for the Ford driver. His vehicle was destroyed and unfortunately the driver died as a result of his injuries.
The driver of the Lincoln was taken to Resurrection Medical Center where he received treatment for his injuries. The semi truck driver was not injured and did not receive medical treatment, according to authorities.
The collision closed all outbound lanes of the Kennedy Expressway between the Edens Expressway and Cumberland Avenue for three hours during morning rush hour but all lanes were reopened in the late morning.
Police have determined that the semi truck driver caused the collision when he was unable to slow down in time to avoid the crash. It is not clear whether the semi driver has been charged or will be charged with any violations in relation to the accident or why he failed to stop for traffic.
Crashes involving semi trucks are particularly dangerous due to the large size and mass of the truck when compared to a standard passenger vehicle. In fact, a semi with a trailer can be 20 times the size of an opposing car. This means that in a car versus semi collision, the car almost always sustains extreme damage and the passengers often are injured.
This size differential makes truck crashes more deadly than almost any other type of crash, as indicated by the collision that occurred earlier this week. With trucks making up a large portion of all vehicles on the road, it is nearly impossible to avoid them, making innocent car drivers at risk for crashes.
What many people do not realize is that commercial drivers, including semi truck drivers, have a different standard of conduct in some situations than others. This is because of the inherent danger that comes with driving a truck and the responsibility that is entrusted to truck drivers. While the increased regulations are designed to keep the roads safer, many of the semi crashes that result often occur as a violation of one or more safety standards or general regulations.