Posted on Oct 16, 2013

Unnecessary fatalities are always a chilling reminder that everyone needs to ‘Yield To Pedestrians’ to make the streets of Illinois safer for everyone. In the past month, multiple pedestrian accidents have taken place, resulting in fatalities that could have been avoided.

On Wednesday, October 9, two University of Illinois students were hit by a truck traveling south on Lincoln Avenue by 58-year-old Willie Craft. One of the students, junior Mimi Liu, was seriously injured and later died at Carle Foundation Hospital while the second victim, student Spandana Matravadi, sustained serious, but not life-threatening injuries.

An investigation into the incident is still ongoing, but eyewitnesses reported that the vehicle drove across a sidewalk multiple times and also hit street signs and an occupied vehicle in traffic. The incident took place on Lincoln Ave. and Nevada St. near the McKinley Heath Center.

In O’Fallon, IL, an elderly couple was hit by a car while using a pedestrian crosswalk on Saturday, September 14. 67-year-old Patricia Henggeler and 66-year-old William Henggeler were walking back to their car on U.S. Route 50 and South Hilgard St near the O’Fallon Community Park after watching their grandson play in the park. Patricia died from her injuries while William remains in stable condition.

The driver stopped at the scene and cooperated, but the investigation is still ongoing. An eyewitness said she wasn’t drunk, speeding or using her cell phone and that the intersection itself is dangerous. Regardless, drivers need to be extra attentive when driving in dangerous intersections and must yield to pedestrians at all corners and crosswalks.

Furthermore, on Wednesday, September 25, another pedestrian was killed at another dangerous intersection in Collinsville, IL. 52-year-old Laura Helmkamp was hit by a pick-up truck attempting to make a right turn from Bridle Ridge Rd. onto Beltline Rd. Helmkamp died at the scene and became the third pedestrian accident victim on Beltline Rd. this year. 22-year-old Anthony Connors was killed in February and 24-year-old Eric Roby suffered nonfatal injuries on that same road in August.

The personal injury law firm of Hupy and Abraham has tirelessly promoted pedestrian awareness to encourage drivers to be more mindful. At dangerous intersections like the ones in Collinsville and O’Fallon, drivers need to be extra careful to make sure accidents don’t occur.

Jill Erin Wellskopf
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Director of Marketing, Hupy and Abraham