Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Investigation Shows Dangerous Cab Drivers Remain on the Road

A recent investigation by the Chicago Tribune revealed that Chicago cabdrivers with dangerous driving records are being allowed to remain on the road. The investigation was sparked by two recent deaths involving cabdrivers striking pedestrians in the Chicagoland area. In June, cabdriver Yao Ofori lost control of his cab and struck a man on the sidewalk, killing him instantly. Two months later, cabdriver Mohammed M. Ahmed hit an elderly woman crossing Sheridan Road, causing fatal injuries. Both drivers remain on the road.
According to City of Chicago ordinances, cabdrivers who are found guilty of moving violations three times in one year are not to be allowed to renew their chauffeur’s license. Despite this, the investigation found that many cabdrivers who are constantly ticketed by the Police suffer little or no consequences.
The investigation revealed that 75 percent of the tickets issued by the Chicago Police Department are dismissed for want of prosecution, namely, the arresting officer does not show up in Court. However, the dismissal rate for tickets issued by the Illinois State Police was only 40 percent. A spokesman for the Chicago Police Department stated that officers who miss court dates may be out sick, on furlough or redeployed to appear at more serious criminal proceedings, but acknowledged that appearing at court for moving violations is the “lowest on the hierarchy” for officers.
Keeping pedestrians and bicyclists safe from dangerous drivers should be a top priority for both the City of Chicago and Cook County. The fact these dangerous cabdrivers are allowed to remain on the road is a matter of great concern. There needs to be greater involvement by the Chicago Police and Illinois State Police to make sure these cases are not dismissed and these unsafe drivers are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and hopefully removed from the road.
Keating Law Offices is currently handling several cases involving negligent cab drivers. If you have any questions regarding this post or an issue involving Illinois personal injury law, please contact Keating Law Offices at mkeating@keatinglegal.com or 312-239-6787. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.
Source: Chicago Tribune, September 23, 2011. www.chicagotribune.com