Traffic fatality after last year's ice storm prompts suit against Edwardsville and driver

Steve Gonzalez Dec. 5, 2007, 4:00am

The estate of Ann Gardiner filed a wrongful death suit against Larry Brock and the City of Edwardsville in Madison County Circuit Court Dec. 3 over a traffic accident that occurred after last year's widespread ice storm.

Gardiner's estate is represented by her two sons, Brian and Collin Gardiner.

They claim their mother was driving a 2004 Dodge Neon on Dec. 1, 2006, when Brock collided with her at the intersection of Esic Drive and Governors Parkway in Edwardsville.

Southern Illinois was blanketed with ice on Nov. 30, 2006, causing power outages that lasted for weeks in some areas.

According to the complaint, the traffic lights at the intersection were not working, and Brock, who was traveling westbound on Governors Parkway, disregarded the non-functioning traffic signal, failed to stop his vehicle that had already entered into the intersection, swerved to avoid another vehicle and then collided with Ann's car, killing her.

The estate claims Brock operated his motor vehicle faster than a reasonable person would have with regard to traffic conditions, failed to reduce his speed and failed to stop prior to entering the intersection.

Her estate is seeking damages against the city of Edwardsville claiming it is negligent because a winter storm knocked out the power at the intersection and it failed to erect folding stop signs or other warning devices.

"Given the conditions it was necessary and reasonable for the city to take steps to ensure the safety of the roadways," the complaint states.

Brian and Collin claim that their mom's death has deprived them of her services, comfort, companionship and society.

They also claim they have incurred funeral and burial expenses.

The estate is represented by Greg Roosevelt of Edwardsville.

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