At 3 p.m. on September 18, 2010, a 61-year-old truck driver, Milan Tomasevic, was driving south on the Stevenson Expressway/I-55 traveling through Cook County, Illinois. The semi trailer truck he was driving is owned by G&S Expedited Freight, based out of Chicago.
Tomasevic had turned onto an off-ramp at Harlem Avenue. The intersection at the exit ramp was an active construction zone. At the time of the accident, an electronic sign was posted at the expressway exit ramp entrance forbidding right turns to trucks due to the limited working space in the construction zone. Police say Tomasevic attempted to make an illegal right turn; in doing so, he apparently pinned a construction worker between his semi and a barricade.
Aurelio Rosales, 33, a worker for Illinois Department of Transportation contractor Midwest Fencing, was making repairs to a barrier fence when the truck hit him. The truck driver tried to back his truck up, but Rosales had already been seriously injured by the semi. He was stabilized at the scene and then taken to Loyola University Medical Center in nearby Maywood, Illinois, where he was pronounced dead at 5:29 p.m. No one else was hurt in the accident.
Forest View Police say Tomasevic is charged with failing to stop in a construction area, making an improper turn and disobeying a traffic control device. Preliminary investigations point to the accident being caused by the illegal turn in the construction zone. Authorities are trying to determine why Tomasevic ignored the signs. They are still looking into the possibility of driver recklessness, mechanical problems or if drugs or alcohol were factors.
Tomasevic could receive a $10,000 fine and could be sentenced to between 3 to 14 years in prison. In addition, the trucking company he works for could be named in a wrongful death lawsuit once the investigation is completed.