Posted On: October 30, 2006 by Christopher T. Hurley

Naperville, Illinois collision injures police officer

A Naperville, Illinois police officer responding to an emergency collided with another vehicle at 4:45 p.m. Sunday, sending the officer and the other driver, a teen, to the hospital. The collision occurred at the intersection of Jefferson Avenue and Ambassador Drive, just east of Route 59 in Naperville. According to a Daily Herald report by Kathryn Grondin, the officer was driving east on Jefferson with emergency lights activated, and was attempting to pass the teen’s car on the left when the two vehicles collided. The collision sent both vehicles into the parkway on the north side of the street. Both vehicles sustained significant damage.

No charges had been filed Sunday night, pending completion of the investigation.

A police officer responding to an emergency call is protected by certain immunities under Illinois state law. In this case, the police officer and his employer, the municipality, may be liable only if the officer was engaged in willful and wanton misconduct—a higher standard of proof in a civil lawsuit than negligence—when the collision occurred. However, civilian drivers have a duty to render the right of way to emergency vehicle, and the failure to do so may result in liability for the officer’s injuries.

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