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Carr v. Shirland Township

OPINION FILED DECEMBER 13, 1978.

THOMAS J. CARR, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

SHIRLAND TOWNSHIP, DEFENDANT-APPELLEE. — (JOHN A. ROESSELL ET AL., DEFENDANTS.)



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Winnebago County; the Hon. JOHN E. SYPE, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE WOODWARD DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Plaintiff, Thomas J. Carr, brought this four-count complaint against John A. Roessell (Roessell), Winnebago County and Shirland Township (Shirland), for personal injuries suffered in an automobile collision. Counts I and II alleged that Roessell was guilty of negligence and willful and wanton conduct respectively; count III alleged that Winnebago County was guilty of negligence; and count IV alleged that Shirland was guilty of negligence. After Shirland filed an answer to the complaint, plaintiff, with leave of court, amended count IV to include the allegation that Shirland was covered by liability insurance at the time of the collision; Shirland, in answer to plaintiff's amended count IV, admitted same. Shirland then filed a motion for judgment on the pleadings. The trial court held that count IV failed to allege a cause of action against Shirland and granted the motion. Plaintiff appeals.

All counts of plaintiff's complaint alleged that he was a passenger in a car driven by Roessell; that Roessell was proceeding in a southerly direction on Hauley Road just north of its intersection with Yale Bridge Road; that at the same time one James C. Jacobson was driving a pickup truck in an easterly direction on Yale Bridge Road just west of its intersection with Hauley Road; that Yale Bridge Road was a through street at said intersection since there was a stop sign on Hauley Road for traffic proceeding in a southerly direction; that Roessell drove his car into said intersection without stopping and collided with Jacobson's pickup truck. Count I of the complaint then alleged that Roessell was guilty of the following acts of negligence:

"a. That he drove said car at a speed that was greater than was reasonable and proper in violation of Chapter 95 1/2, Section 11-601, Illinois Revised Statutes, 1975.

b. That he drove said car at a speed greater than 55 m.p.h., in violation of Chapter 95 1/2, Section 11-601, Illinois Revised Statutes, 1975.

c. That he failed to decrease his speed as he approached said intersection.

d. That he failed to stop and yield the right-of-way to the Jacobson pickup truck in violation of Chapter 95 1/2, Section 11-904(b), Illinois Revised Statutes, 1975.

e. That he failed to decrease the speed of his vehicle to avoid colliding with the Jacobson pickup truck.

f. That he failed and omitted to keep a proper lookout.

g. That he failed and omitted to have and keep his vehicle under due and proper control."

Count I went on to allege that plaintiff's injuries were the proximate result of Roessell's acts of negligence. Count II alleged the same facts but alleged that Roessell was guilty of willful and wanton conduct.

In count IV of the amended complaint plaintiff alleged that Shirland was guilty of one or more of the following acts of negligence:

"a. Allowed the `Stop Ahead' sign on Hauley Road just north of its intersection with Yale Bridge Road to remain down even though it knew, or should have known, it was down.

b. Failed to place or maintain the `Stop' sign on Hauley Road at its intersection with Yale ...


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