Alton moves for summary judgment in '04 suit over traffic light's role in accident

By Amelia Flood | Apr 19, 2011

The City of Alton is moving for summary judgment in a seven year-old case brought by a driver who claims that a 2003 accident was caused by the city's failure to install the right type of stop sign.

The case filed by plaintiff Matthew Adelsbach against Alton and John Riddlespringer had been set to open at trial on Monday.

However, the case is now set for a hearing on Alton's summary judgment move May 6 at 9 a.m. before Madison County Circuit Judge Andreas Matoesian.

Adelsbach sued the city in 2004 after a March 2003 accident at the intersection of Alby Street and East 20th Street.

Adelsbach claims that the city's failure to install a four-way stop sign at the intersection as opposed to the two-way stop sign that was in place led to his collision with Riddlespringer.

In its summary judgment moved filed initially last year and supplemented last month, the city points to Adelsbach's own actions as the cause of the crash.

Alton contends that Adelsbach did not yield the right of way to Riddlespringer and that he was on his cell phone at the time of the accident.

The city further argues that the plaintiff has not presented evidence that it had a duty to install a different stop sign than the one that was in place.

"The Plaintiff only claims that the traffic patterns and reports of accidents support a four-way stop and not the two-way stop that the City of Alton chose to install," the summary judgment's support memorandum reads.

The city also claims immunity from Adelsbach's claims under the Local Governmental and Governmental Employees Tort Immunity Act.

Charles Pierce represents Alton.

Patrick Duffy represents an intervenor in the case, Federal Insurance Company.

David Jones represents the plaintiff.

Riddlespringer represents himself.

The case is Madison case number 04-L-252.

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