Funeral processions have long been one of the customs that Americans use to mourn the recently deceased. After a funeral, it is common to see a long line of cars driving slowly from the church to the cemetery to be present as the casket is placed above or in its final resting place.
Unfortunately, the pace of modern society moves very quickly these days; and this often makes this custom impractical and unsafe – particularly here in the Chicago area. Earlier this month, one person was killed and several others were injured as the result of a car accident that occurred during a funeral procession.
According to news sources, the crash happened near the intersection of West 109th Street and South Vincennes Avenue at around 1:00 pm on a Tuesday. A Buick in the procession reportedly clipped a beverage truck and was sent into oncoming traffic, where it was struck by a different vehicle traveling in the opposite direction.
The driver of the Buick died shortly after the accident. Several other children and adults were injured in the crash and were sent to area hospitals.
It isn’t yet clear who (if anyone) was at fault for the crash, but this incident nonetheless provides a grim reminder to all Chicago-area drivers. If you come across a funeral procession, it is important to be patient and drive cautiously. Drivers who break up funeral processions can be ticketed for it. They also put other drivers in danger.
If you are part of a funeral procession, it is dangerous to assume that other drivers will pay you the courtesy that the custom deserves. Therefore, you should remain vigilant and drive defensively in case you encounter impatient and aggressive drivers.
A funeral procession is meant to show respect for one who has died. What better way to do so than to remember that life is fragile and that we must all work to keep ourselves and others safe as we travel the streets of Chicago.
Source: NBC Chicago, “1 Dead, Several Injured in Crash During Funeral Procession,” Emily Florez, Aug. 6, 2013