Illinois Accident Lawyer Applauds Fifth Year of ‘Operation Teen Safe Driving’

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Chicago personal injury attorney Patrick A. Salvi of Salvi, Schostok and Pritchard P.C. says adults should model proper driving behavior taught by teenager-led program.

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Illinois accident lawyer Patrick A. Salvi

It is a benefit to us all for teenagers to learn that there are real dangers behind distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, texting, and other reckless driving behavior.

Illinois accident attorney Patrick A. Salvi today applauded the 2011 edition of the state’s Operation Teen Safe Driving program, which will again feature teenagers in a peer-led safety awareness campaign.

“Operation Teen Safe Driving, now in its fifth year, has been a strong and successful campaign for teaching young drivers about the responsibilities that come with a driver’s license,” said Salvi, managing partner at Salvi, Schostok and Pritchard, PC, a firm that has recovered millions of dollars on behalf of Illinois automobile accident victims.

“It is a benefit to us all for teenagers to learn that there are real dangers behind distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, texting, and other reckless driving behavior,” Salvi continued.

The Illinois Department of Transportation says the Operation Teen Safe Driving program has helped reduced teenage fatalities in automobile accidents by 45 percent in the state over four years.

Operation Teen Safe Driving is an initiative among Illinois high schools in which students develop peer-led safe driving programs within their schools and compete to win money to implement the programs. Schools are selected from each region in the state to compete for additional money to put toward after-prom programs.

“Programs like Operation Teen Safe Driving, in which teens educate each other, are great and appreciated, but we all need to remember that a young person’s parents are their most effective teachers,” Salvi said. “And, sadly, not all parents are teaching our children appropriate behaviors.”

Salvi led a personal injury lawsuit filed by Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard on behalf of a Lake Forest teenager paralyzed in a car accident caused by an underage drinker who was allowed to drink at the home of a friend whose mother was present.

Judge Christopher Stark of the Lake County Circuit Court awarded a $2.5 million partial settlement to the teen in February 2009 after agreeing with Salvi that the adult who did nothing to prevent the teenage driver’s intoxication was responsible for the chain of events that ultimately led to the accident. (Baldwin v. Klairmont, et al., No. 07 L 105).

“We want to see parents and other adults take seriously their role in preventing injuries and deaths in motor vehicle accidents by modeling proper behavior and stopping improper behavior,” Salvi said. “Teenagers should not be drinking, and adults who enourage or allow teens to consume alcohol are committing a crime.”

Salvi said his firm will continue to pursue personal ijury or wrongful death lawsuits against adults whose action or inaction contributes to reckless or drunk driving by teenagers.

“Adults who text or use cellphones while driving a car are also modeling reckless and potentially deadly behavior, and they should be held acountable for this kind of activity, particularly when it results in injuries or fatalities,” he said.

“That’s a strong and successful campaign that Salvi, Schostak & Pritchard will contiue to wage year after year.”

About Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C.

Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. is a leading Illinois personal injury law firm with offices in Chicago and Waukegan. In addition to representing clients in catastrophic personal injury, medical malpractice, aviation and product liability cases, the firm focuses on car and truck accidents, airplane and train accidents, construction injuries, birth injuries, brain injuries, unsafe properties and animal attacks. The firm has obtained more than $600 million on behalf of its clients in personal injury and wrongful death cases, including 170 multi-million dollar verdicts or settlements. For more information, call (312) 372-1227 or use the firm’s online contact form.

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