CHICAGO, IL – A 20-year-old woman from Rolling Meadows was fatally struck on her bicycle Tuesday morning by a semi-truck, as she rode through the West Town Neighborhood of Chicago’s Northwest Side.
The victim, Lisa Kuivinen, was a BFA student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in Buffalo Grove. She was riding down Milwaukee Avenue in the green painted bike lanes towards downtown when she was hit by an 18-wheeler owned by the Illinois Brick Company. After being struck near North Racine Street, Kuivinen’s bike and body were dragged underneath the brick-laden truck.
Milwaukee Avenue is one of the city’s busiest biking corridors. With one-half of the street having protected bike lanes and the other not, the block between the bridge over the Kennedy and Racine is dangerous for cyclists, as ongoing construction forces cyclists to share the little room that remains on the unprotected with large trucks and commercial vehicles. Riding so dangerously close together, many residents believe that this has been an accident waiting to happen.
The driver responsible for the accident was issued citations for both driving in the bicycle lane and failure to take due care.
In cases like this, the victim’s family has the right to pursue a civil action for the wrongful death of Ms. Kuivinen. It is most likely that the Illinois Brick Company will be found negligent and therefore liable for damages. Further investigation may also show that nearby construction and civil works projects could have played a role in the death of Ms. Kuivinen. If this is the case, additional claims could potentially be made against construction companies and/or the city if found responsible.