Monday, July 7, 2014

Details Emerge in Barbie Eno Case

Stock Image of Kenworth W900 Cement Truck

The Chicago Sun-Times has reported additional details regarding the circumstances surrounding the death of 28-year old Barbie Eno of the Portage Park neighborhood. According to the report, based on the position of the Kenworth W900 truck and Barbie Eno's bicycle after the collision, both vehicles were traveling northbound on Cicero Avenue towards Belmont Avenue. Other reports indicated that the Kenworth W900 truck was a "concrete truck," meaning that the truck was pulling a concrete mixer as opposed to a trailer.

Northbound Cicero Avenue at Belmont Avenue
The Sun-Times article further indicates that the driver of the truck did not see the bicyclist prior to impact and only stopped when he noticed people waiving at him. A driver of a tractor truck like the Kenworth W900 is required to adhere to all of the applicable rules of the road, such as the Chicago Municipal Code and the Illinois Vehicle Code, and also to Federal requirements. These requirements provide that 1) the driver of a cement truck like this should "keep a proper lookout" for bicycles but 2) to not turn right until it is safe to do so. It is axiomatic that if a vehicle is "clear" to turn, that a bicycle crash cannot occur.

Here are some of the key laws that apply to a bicycle crash of this nature:
  • 49 C.F.R. Section 383.111 of the Code of Federal Regulations requires a professional driver to recognize and avoid potential hazards at all times around a turning tractor truck. 
  •  Section 11-1003.1 of the Illinois Motor Vehicle Code states that every driver of a vehicle must 1) always exercise care to avoid colliding with pedestrians and bicyclists, and 2) sound their horn to provide warning of an impending impact.
  • Section 9-16-020 of the Municipal Code of Chicago specifically provides that a motor vehicle should not turn right across the path of a bicyclist traveling in the same direction until it is "clear" and safe to make the turn. This is known as a "right hook."
DNAInfo Chicago provided a very thoughtful article on Barbie Eno that also contains service information.

Our thoughts and prayers remain with Barbie Eno's family and friends. God bless all of you at this difficult time.

Keating Law Offices is the premiere law firm in Illinois that represents victims of bicycle accidents and crashes. Attorney Michael S. Keating is the Chair of the Bicycle Litigation Committee for the National Trial Lawyers Associaiton, the American Association for Justice. The firm is nationally renowned for its experience in handling cases stemming from injuries or wrongful deaths as a result of collisions with motor vehicles.

If you have any questions regarding this post or an issue involving Illinois personal injury law, contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Michael S. Keating at 312-208-7702 or 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and absolutely free and without any obligation.