Asleep at the wheel: Tragedy on an Illinois interstate

Because we have interstate highway traffic roaring by Edwardsville every minute of every day, we understand the dangers of high-speed driving. Precisely because of those speeds, motor vehicle crashes on interstates are often violent collisions that result in serious injuries and fatalities.

Common causes of interstate wrecks include distracted driving, excess speed, impairment and drowsy driving. We read recently of an interstate highway crash in which an Illinois woman fell asleep at the wheel in the early afternoon, triggering a series of collisions – one of which ended in the death of a 79-year-old driver.

Law enforcement officials said a 28-year-old Illinois woman fell asleep at the wheel of her Nissan as she was driving east on I-290. Her car struck a Ford minivan, driven by the 79-year-old woman, which then hit a third vehicle.

After the van hit the third vehicle, it ran into the center median wall, police said. The van’s driver was taken to a nearby hospital but was pronounced dead within an hour of her arrival.

The woman who fell asleep sustained only minor injuries, as did the driver of the third vehicle involved in the chain reaction.

The Centers for Disease Control says that truck drivers, people who do shift-work (night shifts or extra shifts), and those with sleep disorders are most likely to put other motorists at risk by driving while drowsy.

The result of drowsy driving, as in the case mentioned, can be tragic.

Those who have lost loved ones or who have been injured by a drowsy driver should contact an Edwardsville attorney experienced in both personal injury and wrongful death litigation.