Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Chicago Bicyclist Killed In Collision With Van In Jefferson Park

The Chicago Sun-Times reported that a 59-year-old man named Thomas Travers passed away on Monday July 26, 2021 after being struck by a van on North Milwaukee Avenue. The collision occurred in the northwest side neighborhood of Jefferson Park. Mr. Travers spent two days at St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, Illinois after the crash where he sadly passed away due to the multiple injuries he sustained from the accident.

The crash occurred in the afternoon of July 24, 2021, on the busy road of the 5300 block of North Milwaukee Avenue. Milwaukee Avenue is a popular street among cyclists in Chicago because of the miles of designated bike lanes that cross throughout the different neighborhoods in the city. The bike lanes of Milwaukee Avenue are used by cyclists of all ages riding throughout the day.

Although the report has limited details about the accident, the Chicago Sun-Times states Mr. Travers was traveling in the bike lane while having to "weave" around at times. This would seem to imply that the bicyclist was entirely at fault. However, the Municipal Code of Chicago mandates that every driver use extra caution to avoid crashing with a pedestrian or bicyclist on the road. 

Section 9-40-160 of the Municipal Code states as follows:

"Every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian, or any person operating a bicycle or other device propelled by human or animal power, upon any roadway, and shall give warning by sounding the horn when necessary and shall exercise proper precautions upon observing any child or any confused or incapacitated person upon a roadway."
Stated differently, drivers are required to be extra cautious and give a warning in order to avoid a collision with a pedestrian and a bicyclist in ALL situations and take extra care if the person appears to be confused or incapacitated. 

The tragic death of Mr. Travers is another unfortunate reminder of the dangers we all face while riding on the road. Although the 5300 block of North Milwaukee Avenue has a clearly marked bike lane as shown above, the paint that makes the bike lane is not enough to keep cyclists in our community safe. Our prayers are with the loved ones of Thomas Travers.