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Posts tagged "Fatality Tracker"

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Trucker Fatally Strikes Man, 59, on Eight-Lane Stretch of Congress Parkway

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The 100 block of West Congress Parkway. Image: Google Street View

A truck driver ran over and killed a 59-year-old man last week in the Loop, according to the police.

On Wednesday, November 30, at about 10:26 a.m., the driver of a large semi truck was stopped at a red light, facing westbound, according to Officer Bari Lemmon from Police News Affairs. When the light turned green, the trucker pulled forward and struck the pedestrian, Lemmon said.

Police initially stated the driver fled the scene. However, Lemmon said today that the 50-year-old male driver didn’t realize at first he had run over the victim, but did remain at the scene once he was made aware of the crash.

The victim was transported to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, according to the Cook County medical inspector’s office. His name has not been released, pending notification of kin, according to the medical examiner’s office.

The driver was cited for failure to exercise due care for a pedestrian in the roadway. He is due in traffic court on January 30 at 9 a.m.

This section of Congress has eight travel lanes, and a few blocks west of the crash site it turns into an expressway. Despite a 2012 reconstruction project, which removed a travel lane further east and added pedestrian refuge areas in the median, Congress is still a dangerous, intimidating street to cross, which discourages north-south foot traffic to and from the Loop.

Along with the death of Phillip Levato Jr., 23, struck and killed by a hit-and-run SUV driver in the early morning of November 20 at Chicago and LaSalle, this was the second downtown pedestrian fatality case in an 11-day period.

Fatality Tracker: 2016 Chicago pedestrian and bicyclist deaths
Pedestrian: 21 (nine were hit-and-run crashes)*
Bicyclist: 6 (one was a hit-and-run crash)

*Streetsblog Chicago’s fatality tracker is based on news reports. On November 2, the Chicago Department of Transportation announced that there had been 29 pedestrian fatalities in the city as of September 30, according to preliminary police data. CDOT has not released data on the number of hit-and-run pedestrian crashes.

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SUV Driver Killed Phillip Levato, 23, at Chicago and LaSalle, Fled the Scene

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The crash site from the driver’s perspective. Image: Google Street View

Police are searching for the driver of an SUV who fatally struck a 23-year-old man on the Near North Side early Sunday morning and sped away from the crash site.

On Sunday at about 4 a.m. Phillip Levato was walking in the intersection of Chicago Avenue and LaSalle Street, according to police. There he was struck by the driver of a southbound white 2016 Jeep Compass with Indiana license plate BU3440, police said. The motorist continued south without stopping to render aid.

Levato, of the 1300 block of West 32nd Place in Bridgeport, was transported to Northwestern Memorial Hospital and pronounced dead at 4:35 a.m., according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Police have said they do not believe Levato was intentionally struck. They’re asking ask anyone with information about the crash to call Major Accidents at 312-745-4521.

Nearby resident Annette Elmore told WGN near-crashes are common at this intersection. “If you’re not careful, the cars here are speeding so fast, they’ll run you over flat,” she said. “People come whipping around this corner and aren’t looking at the pedestrians.”

Fatality Tracker: 2016 Chicago pedestrian and bicyclist deaths
Pedestrian: 20 (nine were hit-and-run crashes)*
Bicyclist: 6 (one was a hit-and-run crash)

*Streetsblog Chicago’s fatality tracker is based on news reports. On November 2, the Chicago Department of Transportation announced that there had been 29 pedestrian fatalities in the city as of September 30, according to preliminary police data. CDOT has not released data on the number of hit-and-run pedestrian crashes.

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Driver Who Killed Noah Katz, 2, In Portage Park Charged With Misdemeanors

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Giddings and Central, looking west. The driver made a left turn into the south leg of the intersection (left side of this image) striking Noah Katz and his mother. Image: Google Streets View

A two-year-old boy is dead and his mother is injured after a driver blew a stop sign and failed to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk while turning left in Portage Park, according to police.

At around 4:10 p.m. Sunday, Noah Katz, 2, and his 39-year-old mother were crossing eastbound in the south leg of the southernmost intersection of Giddings Street and Central Avenue, police said. Alexander Vasquez, 48, was driving a van westbound on Giddings.

Police say Vasquez failed to observe the stop sign and made a left turn at a high rate of speed, striking the toddler and his mother in the crosswalk. Neighbors told WGN that Vasquez dragged the boy several feet before stopping. One witness said that it appeared the driver was going to flee the scene, so he got out of his car and yelled at Vasquez to stop.

A nurse who happened to be on the scene attempted CPR on Noah Katz, WGN reported. The child was pronounced dead on the scene and his mother was transported to Lutheran General hospital in Park Ridge with injuries that appeared to be non-life-threatening, police said.

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The crash took place at the southernmost intersection of Giddings and Central. the nearest stop sign east of the crash site is at Linder. Image: Google Maps

Vasquez was issued one citation for failure to stop at a stop sign, two for failure to reduce speed, and two for failure to yield to a pedestrian in the crosswalk, police said.

Stuffed animals, flowers, and candles have been left at the intersection as a memorial. Neighbors told CBS that diamond-shaped “yield to pedestrians” signs at the intersection have not been effective.

The neighbors said more stop signs should be installed in the area to calm traffic. There is a stop sign one full block east of the crash site at Giddings and Linder Avenue.

A spokesman for local alderman John Arena’s office told CBS that the ward has been trying to improve traffic issue on Central for years. The alderman plans to work with the city’s transportation department to improve safety in the area around Giddings/Central, pending more information about the crash, the spokesman said.

“I don’t understand why a two-year-old gorgeous little tiny guy had to be killed like that,” neighbor Sharon Sands told CBS.

Update 11/14/16 4:30 PM: A reader noted that, about a quarter north of this crash site, Caroll Brown, 76, was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver while crossing Central at Ainslie Street in December 2015. It appears that the driver was never apprehended.

Fatality Tracker: 2016 Chicago pedestrian and bicyclist deaths
Pedestrian: 19 (eight were hit-and-run crashes)*
Bicyclist: 6 (one was a hit-and-run crash)

*Streetsblog Chicago’s fatality tracker is based on news reports. On November 2, the Chicago Department of Transportation announced that there had been 29 pedestrian fatalities in the city as of September 30, according to preliminary police data. CDOT has not released data on the number of hit-and-run pedestrian crashes.

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2016 Is on Track to Be a Deadlier Year for Chicago Pedestrians Than Usual

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With 29 pedestrian fatalities in nine months, Chicago is on track to hit about 39 deaths in 2016, higher than the average of 35.4 since 2010.

The number of Chicago pedestrian deaths this August was 67 percent higher than the average for the last several years, and 2017 is shaping up to be a deadlier-than-average year for people on foot, according to data from local officials.

At a Mayor’s Pedestrian Advisory Council meeting on Wednesday, deputy transportation commissioner Luann Hamilton discussed the latest Chicago pedestrian fatality numbers, based on preliminary data from the Chicago Police Department. Seven people were fatally struck within the city while on foot in August of this year, compared to the average of 4.2 pedestrian deaths for the that month between 2010 and 2016, according to official data from the Illinois Department of Transportation and the CPD.

Hamilton added that Chicago saw 29 pedestrian fatalities from January through September of 2017. (I had tallied 18 pedestrian deaths so far this year in Streetsblog Chicago’s Fatality Tracker, since our numbers are based on news reports rather than police data, which isn’t readily available to the public. I’ve requested the remaining 2016 pedestrian fatality reports from CDOT and will update the Fatality Tracker with this info if I receive it.)

“That’s close to what we would normally have at this time of year, if you want to call it normal, people dying in the streets,” Hamilton said. However, 29 deaths through September means we’re on track for 39 fatalities for the year, which is actually higher than the average of 35.4 deaths in recent years.

On the positive side, no people on foot were fatally struck within the city in September, while the recent average for that month is 3.6 deaths. I also saw no news reports of pedestrian fatalities in October, although Hamilton didn’t provide the CPD number for that month.

“Is there any speculation for why we got so lucky in September,” an attendee asked? Hamilton was unsure, although another CDOT staffer noted that Chicago pedestrian fatalities have tended to taper off during the fall during the most recent years.

The data also showed that August has had the highest average number of pedestrian fatalities, while January has the lowest. Weather may be a factor for this, since more people choose to get around by foot in warm months than in cold ones.

Here’s are CDOT’s descriptions of the seven August pedestrian fatalities, with links to the Fatality Tracker posts for cases that were previously reported by other news outlets.

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Today’s Crash, Nick Fox’s Passing Bring 2016 Chicago Bike Death Toll to Six

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This morning at 9:30, police had blocked off Addison at Damen following the fatal bike/truck crash. Photo: John Greenfield

Tragically, last week’s epidemic of bike fatalities and serious injury crashes in the Chicago region, has continued into this week. This morning a young woman was fatally struck by a flatbed truck driver in Roscoe Village. She was the sixth person to be struck and killed by a commercial vehicle driver while biking in Chicago and Evanston since June, and the third to be run over by a right-turning flatbed truck driver.

And early Sunday morning, well-liked Garfield Ridge pizzeria worker Nick Fox passed away from injuries sustained from a bike/train crash in June. That means that six people have died from bike crashes in 2016.

According to police, at around 7:50 a.m. today the female cyclist, believed to be in her 30s, was biking north on Damen Avenue south of Addison Street. According to the city’s bike map, this stretch of Damen has “shared-lane markings” – bike-and-chevrons symbols designed to remind motorists to watch out for cyclists.

Police said that the driver of the northbound flatbed truck, carrying construction supplies, made a right turn, heading eastbound onto Addison, and ran over the woman. Witnesses said the woman was killed instantly.

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The flatbed track from this morning’s crash. Photo: John Greenfield

According to an ABC news report, witness Carole Cifone said the truck driver immediately jumped out of the vehicle and tried to aid the woman. “The driver was so distraught, they took him away in an ambulance,” Cifone said. “He was just bent out of shape by what had happened [and the fact] that he was responsible.”

Officer Nicole Trainor from Police News Affairs said an investigation of the crash is ongoing and the driver has not yet been cited. According to the Cook County medical investigator’s office, the victim’s name and age had not been released as of early this afternoon.

As of 9:30 this morning, police had closed off two blocks of Addison east of Damen, and the victim’s body still lay in the street covered with sheets. The bike was not visible, but photos from other news reports show a badly damaged road bike.

“Any vehicle needs to constantly be aware of cyclists on the road,” a bike rider named Meg told ABC. “This is a [road with shared-lane markings]. There’s no excuse.”

DNAinfo reported that about ten people were waiting for the #152 Addison bus at the intersection when the crash occurred, and they stayed on the scene to provide testimony to investigators.

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Driver Cited for Negligence After Fatally Striking Man in Dunning

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The 7900 block of West Belmont, from the driver’s perspective. Image: Google Street View

The motorist who struck and killed an as-yet-unidentified man in the Dunning neighborhood early Sunday morning has received two citations.

At about 12:40 a.m. Sunday, a man who appeared to be in his fifties was crossing southbound on the 7900 block of West Belmont, according to Officer Jose Estrada from Police News Affairs. The man’s name has not been released pending notification of kin, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Jaime Delgado, driving westbound in a 2006 Honda Sedan, struck the pedestrian. The victim was transported to Loyola Hospital in critical condition and was later pronounced dead.

Delgado, who remained at the scene, was ticketed for negligent driving and driving without a license. “According to a preliminary investigation, the pedestrian may have unexpectedly entered the roadway and the driver may not have had time to respond,” said Estrada.

It’s not clear who provided that testimony, but obviously the victim is not alive to tell his side of the story. It may be the case that the Delgado didn’t have time to respond because he was driving at an unsafe speed.

Update 9/7/16: The Cook County medical examiner’s office has identified the victim as Krzysztof Wlostowski, of the 7900 block of West Belmont.

Fatality Tracker: 2016 Chicago pedestrian and bicyclist deaths
Pedestrian: 18 (eight were hit-and-run crashes)
Bicyclist: 4 (one was a hit-and-run crash)

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Jessie Rosales, 45, Fatally Struck in Lawndale Alley by Hit-and-Run Driver

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The alley where Rosales was struck, according to the CPD. Image: Google Street View

45-year-old Jessie Rosales was struck and killed in the North Lawndale neighborhood by a motorist who fled the scene last Friday, according to police.

At about 10 p.m. the driver of a dark-colored vehicle was heading south on the 1500 block of South Karlov Avenue when they made a left turn, eastbound, into the north alley of 16th Street and struck Rosales, according to Officer Nicole Trainor from News Affairs. The motorist did not stop to render aid but instead left the crash scene.

Rosales, of the 3900 block of South Euclid Avenue in west-suburban Stickney, was transported to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office. An autopsy on Saturday found that Rosales died from multiple blunt force injuries and ruled the death an accident.

As of this morning, the driver had not been apprehended, Trainor said. Major Accidents is investigating.

Fatality Tracker: 2016 Chicago pedestrian and bicyclist deaths
Pedestrian: 17 (eight were hit-and-run crashes)
Bicyclist: 4 (one was a hit-and-run crash)

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Cynthia Tatman, 56, Fatally Struck on Stretch of Devon With No Sidewalks

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The 5800 block of West Devon, looking east. Police reported the crash site as the 6300 block, which has sidewalks. But ABC footage shows it actually took place several blocks east, on a stretch like this, with a 40 mph speed limit and no sidewalks, close to the North Branch Trail. Image: Google Street View

56-year-old Cynthia Tatman was fatally struck early Tuesday morning while jogging in the Norwood Park neighborhood on a four-lane, high-speed stretch of Devon Avenue.

At around 7:05 a.m., Tatman was running east in a westbound travel lane of Devon next to Caldwell Woods, police said. She lived on the 5800 block of North Navarre Avenue, and neighbors told ABC she jogged in the area regularly.

According to investigators, a westbound driver swerved to avoid hitting Tatman. However, they said the next motorist, driving a tan Honda CR-V SUV, did not have time to avoid the jogger and struck her. Tatman was transported to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

The driver, whose SUV sustained front-end damage and a smashed windshield, stayed on the scene and was not immediately cited. Major Accidents is currently working to determine if the motorist will receive a citation, according to Police News Affairs.

The police stated that the crash took place on the 6300 block of Devon, which has has residences to the south, a 30 mph speed limit and sidewalks. However, footage from the ABC report shows that the crash site was actually on a stretch of Devon with forest preserves on both sides, a 40 mph speed limit, and no sidewalks. The ABC footage also shows that it was location where the North Branch Trail closely parallels Devon.

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Mayya Medovaya, 78, Fatally Struck by Turning UPS Truck Driver in North Park

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The crash site from the driver’s perspective, looking south. Image: Google Street View

A UPS truck driver who was making a right on red fatally struck a senior Monday afternoon in the North Park community, according to police.

At around 4:45 p.m., the 78-year-old woman was crossing the street at Peterson and Central Park in a crosswalk when the 64-year-old male driver made a right turn on red and struck her, according to Police News Affairs. The victim was taken to Swedish Covenant Hospital in critical condition, where she was soon pronounced dead.

The Cook County medical examiner’s office has identified the woman as Mayya Medovaya of the 5800 block of north Pulaski, about six blocks from the crash site. She was the fifth vulnerable road user to be fatally struck by a commercial vehicle in Chicago in about nine weeks.

The UPS driver was cited for failure to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk, according to News Affairs.

The police crash report stated that the driver had been heading west on Peterson and made a northbound right turn onto Central Park. However, photos of the truck parked at the north side of Peterson, just west of Central Park, following the crash, posted by several news outlets, plus a report by WGN, indicate that wasn’t the case.

The WGN reporter stated that Medovaya was walking south across the west leg of the intersection when she was struck, which would be in keeping with the final location of the truck. Therefore, it appears that the driver was also heading south on Central Park and made a right turn, westbound, onto Peterson when he struck the victim.

Witness Micheal Weldler told WGN that traffic on Peterson had the green at the time, which would mean both the pedestrian and the driver had a red light. It appears that right turns on red are legal at this location.

However, even if Medovaya was crossing against the light, that has limited relevance to this case. Even when both the driver and pedestrian have a green, it’s all-too-common for right-turning motorists to carelessly strike pedestrians in crosswalks. Moreover, a driver turning right on red is still responsible for ensuring that the relevant crosswalks are clear before making the turn.

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Francisco Cruz, 58, Fatally Struck by Van Driver While Biking in West Garfield

The Chicago Police Department provided this image of a commercial cargo van that struck Francisco Cruz Wednesday night.

The Chicago Police Department provided this image of a commercial cargo van whose driver struck Francisco Cruz Wednesday night. Image: CPD

We will update this post throughout the day as more facts are made available. 

Francisco Cruz, 58, was struck and killed while biking in West Garfield Park Wednesday night by a cargo van driver who fled the scene. This newest tragedy happened the day after art student Lisa Kuivinen while riding a bike in West Town Tuesday morning. Cruz’s death is the fourth bike fatality this year; all four cases involved a commercial driver.

Cruz was bicycling south on the 200 block of North Pulaski Road at 10:19 p.m. last night when the driver of a northbound white commercial cargo van turned left onto Maypole Avenue and fatally struck him, police said. The driver did not stop to render aid but instead contined west on Maypole.

Cruz, of the 1300 block of South Christiana in North Lawndale, was taken to Stroger Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 11 p.m., according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

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The intersection of Pulaski and Maypole from the driver’s perspective. Image: Google Street View

The police are trying to apprehend the driver and provided an image of the van taken by a security or traffic camera. The phone number visible on back of the van in the image is associated with Advanced Realty Network, a brokerage at 2427 West Madison. A call to the number reached a voicemail for the company. While it’s not clear that the driver was employed by Advanced, presumably the police will visit the company for more information. Anyone who has information can contact the police at 312-745-4521.

As of Thursday afternoon, several people had left abusive comments in the reviews section of Advanced’s Facebook page. Please keep in mind that this is inappropriate, since we don’t even know for sure yet that the driver works for the company.

Cruz’s death follows those of three other bike riders who were fatally struck by commercial vehicle drivers this summer. Courier Blaine Klingenberg was struck and killed by a tour bus driver on June 15 in the Gold Coast. Divvy rider Virginia Murray fatally struck by a flatbed truck driver on July 1 in Avondale, and Lisa Kuivinen was also struck and killed by a the driver of a flatbed truck on August 16. Active Transportation Alliance advocacy director Jim Merrell responded to the news on Twitter this morning, tagging Mayor Emanuel’s and the Chicago Department of Transportation’s accounts.

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