Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog

June 4, 2014

Garbage Spill Causes Crash Between School Bus and Semi Truck on Dan Ryan Expressway

006.jpg Semi trucks serve an important role in the transportation of goods across the nation. They bring food and other products into and out of Chicago, enabling residents to obtain necessities in a relatively efficient manner. On average, semi trucks are involved in fewer collisions per mile driven than other types of passenger vehicles, often making them a safe presence on the roads. But semi truck accidents do occur, and when they happen, the results may be severe due to the truck's large size and weight.

Victims in smaller cars may become injured if they are involved in a semi truck collision and these injuries can be severe or even fatal. Often, no amount of compensation can adequately compensate a victim who has been involved in one of these accidents or the family members of a victim that lost his or her life. But compensation can help ease the financial burden and enable a victim to obtain the medical treatment needed following a crash as well as compensate for other expenses like pain and suffering and lost wages. Speaking with a lawyer who represents accident victims may help you understand if you have a valid claim for your injuries if you have been involved in a crash.

Trucks also pose a hazard to other drivers if they are hauling product or a load that has not properly been secured. According to police in Chicago, this may have been the reason that a school bus and a semi truck collided on the Dan Ryan Expressway on Tuesday afternoon. Though it is still early in the investigation, police believe that a garbage truck traveling in the area lost a container of paper waste, causing the container to fall to the expressway's surface. The incident took place in the southbound lanes near 95th Street and caused a semi truck in the area to veer off the roadway and strike a concrete wall. Officials believe that the semi's trailer separated upon impact with the wall and that a school bus in the area then collided with the trailer.

The driver of the semi was injured in the crash and had to be removed from his vehicle. The school bus was transporting 38 special needs adults, some of whom were injured but all were expected to recover. At this time, officials have not determined what caused the garbage truck to lose the paper product or whether any tickets will be issued as a result of the crash.

Traffic in the area was temporarily rerouted while officials removed debris and performed an on-scene investigation.

Continue reading "Garbage Spill Causes Crash Between School Bus and Semi Truck on Dan Ryan Expressway" »

April 25, 2014

Pedestrian Killed At Scene of Earlier Chicago Truck Accident

520.jpg Chicago hosts a large number of trucks on its streets and expressways daily. Some are local and bringing product into or out of the city while others are simply using the roads to pass through to another location. Regardless of their destinations, the presence of trucks means that there is a possibility that these trucks will be involved in an accident with another vehicle or a pedestrian.

When a truck accident occurs, those involved are likely to suffer injuries. The large nature and heavy weight of a truck mean that a large amount of momentum and force often accompanies these accidents and may lead to damage to the vehicles. Common injuries sustained in a truck accident include cuts and abrasions, bruising and contusions, closed head injuries, broken bones, neck and back injuries, and injuries to the extremities. The worst truck accidents can prove fatal to one or more people involved.

When an accident occurs in Chicago, the victims of that crash may be entitled to seek relief for their damages, including any medical bills they have or will incur. Relief can be sought through the use of a civil claim which allows a victim to seek financial damages against the person or persons responsible for the crash, whether that is another driver, the owner of a truck, or the company that employed the truck's driver. In many cases, multiple claims against multiple people are possible. Speaking with a personal injury lawyer who has experience representing the victims of truck accidents may help you understand your legal rights if you have been hurt in a collision. In the worst accidents, a victim is killed and no amount of relief will ever properly compensate that victim's family for their losses. But a claim may help defray some of the financial burden left behind when a loved one is killed and the right to bring such a claim often rests with the victim's kin.

A truck driver in the Chicago area was killed yesterday in an accident with a truck that authorities are still investigation. The man was originally involved in a minor collision with a car in the 1300 block of West Division around 6:30 a.m. on Thursday which prompted the man to exit his truck and take some photographs. While he was taking pictures, another truck approached the scene of the collision and struck the man, leaving him with critical injuries. Police and emergency responders were called to the scene and the man was evaluated but unfortunately his injuries were too severe and he died as a result of the crash.

The driver of the second truck was not injured in the incident and the driver of the car was believed to have sustained only minor injuries. Police closed down Division Street in the area for several hours as they attempted to determine what led to the fatal collision and whether negligence on the part of anyone involved played a role.

Continue reading "Pedestrian Killed At Scene of Earlier Chicago Truck Accident" »

October 16, 2013

Glenview Garbage Truck Accident Leaves 3 Dead

20131016_094043.jpg Truck accidents occur every day in Illinois with some resulting only in minor damages and others causing serious injuries. The type of truck involved and the nature of the crash may vary but as a group, these accidents result in greater vehicular damage, more significant injuries, and more fatalities than accidents that do not involve trucks, making truck accidents some of the most dangerous collisions possible.

Most trucks are large, heavy vehicles with wide turning radii, significant momentum, and limited visibility. When a truck accident occurs, many assume that a semi truck was involved but in truth, truck accidents can involve many types of other vehicles, including work trucks like garbage trucks.

Following a truck accident, victims in another vehicle may seek advice from a Chicago truck accident lawyer to learn whether or not they may be able to bring a claim for their damages, including any medical bills they will incur. If the truck driver or truck owner was responsible for the crash, often these victims have a valid claim for a financial recovery.

In truly tragic accidents, one or more victims may lose their lives, leaving behind friends and loved ones who suffer losses too great to ever be made right and just.

One such collision occurred in Glenview on Tuesday afternoon when a garbage truck and a car collided, causing the car to roll over and become trapped under the truck. The car then caught fire, damaging the vehicle as well as the garbage truck near Harlem Avenue and Harrison Street. All three people inside the car were killed.

Police are still investigating the incident and have not yet determined how the two vehicles collided or whether any citations will be issued.

Continue reading "Glenview Garbage Truck Accident Leaves 3 Dead" »

May 21, 2013

Semi Truck Crash Leaves 1 Dead in Chicago

A collision on the Kennedy Expressway left one dead and backed up traffic for hours last week in Chicago. 18258_car_-_damaged.jpg

The crash occurred Monday morning near Cumberland Avenue as traffic began to slow. A 65-year-old man in a Ford Explorer began to slow his vehicle for heavy traffic and was struck from behind by a semi truck that failed to slow or stop. The collision forced the Ford to strike a Lincoln Town Car in front of him, causing a second impact for the Ford driver. His vehicle was destroyed and unfortunately the driver died as a result of his injuries.

The driver of the Lincoln was taken to Resurrection Medical Center where he received treatment for his injuries. The semi truck driver was not injured and did not receive medical treatment, according to authorities.

The collision closed all outbound lanes of the Kennedy Expressway between the Edens Expressway and Cumberland Avenue for three hours during morning rush hour but all lanes were reopened in the late morning.

Police have determined that the semi truck driver caused the collision when he was unable to slow down in time to avoid the crash. It is not clear whether the semi driver has been charged or will be charged with any violations in relation to the accident or why he failed to stop for traffic.

Crashes involving semi trucks are particularly dangerous due to the large size and mass of the truck when compared to a standard passenger vehicle. In fact, a semi with a trailer can be 20 times the size of an opposing car. This means that in a car versus semi collision, the car almost always sustains extreme damage and the passengers often are injured.

This size differential makes truck crashes more deadly than almost any other type of crash, as indicated by the collision that occurred earlier this week. With trucks making up a large portion of all vehicles on the road, it is nearly impossible to avoid them, making innocent car drivers at risk for crashes.

What many people do not realize is that commercial drivers, including semi truck drivers, have a different standard of conduct in some situations than others. This is because of the inherent danger that comes with driving a truck and the responsibility that is entrusted to truck drivers. While the increased regulations are designed to keep the roads safer, many of the semi crashes that result often occur as a violation of one or more safety standards or general regulations.

Continue reading "Semi Truck Crash Leaves 1 Dead in Chicago" »

April 23, 2013

Firey Truck Crash Seriously Injures 4 in Illinois

Car%20on%20Fire.jpg A three vehicle crash on the Edens near Northbrook left four people injured on Sunday night, according to the Chicago Tribune. The Illinois State Police Department reported that a truck traveling northbound attempted to switch from the right lane to the center lane when it was not clear to do so, striking a vehicle in the center lane. The truck then veered hard to the right where it struck a second vehicle. After the second impact, the driver of the truck lost control, veered left across all lanes of traffic, and stuck a wall on the highway shoulder.

After the truck came to a rest, one of its gas tanks caught fire. Four people were injured in the collision and transported to local hospitals. A 10-year-old girl and a woman both suffered life-threatening injuries and their present conditions are not known.

Another woman and a man also were injured in the crash which caused traffic in both lanes to be diverted for a period of time.

Illinois State Police confirmed they cited the driver of the truck for improper lane usage, failure to have insurance, and failure to display a medical card and log book.

This collision is a reminder of just how serious crashes with semis can be. Semi trucks can be 20 times larger than a standard passenger car with a mass to match. This means that in a collision, a standard passenger vehicle is no match for a semi and often suffers extreme damage.

In 2011, there were 10,033 crashes involving semi trucks and 93 fatal crashes involving semis in Illinois. This number accounted for 3.6 percent of all crashes but 9.7 percent of fatalities. Of those fatalities, 74 were occupants in vehicles other than the semi and 4 were pedestrians, meaning that 15 of the deaths involved semi-truck drivers and occupants.

Semi truck collisions are also particularly deadly because semis often travel at high rates of speed. Truck drivers spend a large percent of their time on highways and freeways which allows the truckers to drive fast. Increased speeds means that the forces involved in any collision are significant and can lead to serious injuries.

Continue reading "Firey Truck Crash Seriously Injures 4 in Illinois" »

April 19, 2013

Rear-End Collision with Semi Leaves Chicagoan Dead

A 23-year-old driver of an Oldsmobile lost his life early Saturday morning in a collision with a semi truck in Chicago.

Early reports indicate that the driver was behind the semi on northbound State Street when the semi began to slow in anticipation of a left turn. It is not clear whether the semi truck driver used his turn signal or otherwise indicated his intention. semi.jpg

The driver of the Oldsmobile reportedly did not slow down enough to avoid a collision and struck the rear of the semi's trailer, causing significant damage to the vehicle. The driver was transported to John H. Stroger, Jr. hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

Collisions between semi trucks and standard vehicles are often deadly. The most deadly car versus truck collisions are known as underride collisions, where a portion of the car or other vehicle is forced underneath a portion of the truck and/or trailer. Both rear end collisions and collisions from the side are likely to cause a degree of an underride crash. It is unclear at this time whether the collision that killed the Oldsmobile involved any underriding of his vehicle.

As a result of the serious injuries caused by collisions like this in the past, most semis are now required to have underride guards on the rear of their trailers. Though they can differ to some degree, most underride guards consist of a horizontal steel bar that hangs below the lower edge of the rear of a trailer. The bar is designed to withstand the force generated in a collision and prevent a vehicle from sliding underneath the trailer. Keeping a vehicle from being forced beneath a trailer means that the top of the vehicle is less likely to be sheared off, reducing the number of serious injuries, including decapitation.

Though the underride guards have improved safety, a new study suggests the guards do not do enough. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety ("IIHS") recently tested several models of underride guards and recorded the results. What IIHS learned was that the force created in many rear-end collisions is too great for the guards to be as effective as intended, meaning that stronger guards should be used for increased safety.

Also important, the study found that the guards were most successful at preventing vehicles from traveling under a trailer when the vehicle hit the rear of the trailer in a head-on manner. The guards were much less successful when a vehicle struck it at an angle or from the side. This means that drivers who rear end trailers while changing lanes are not as protected in a collision as those who strike trailers directly from behind.

This new study shows why it is important for safety devices to be evaluated and reviewed on a regular basis. Drivers should be aware that the guards are not effective in every type of collision and that underride collisions still occur far too often. The best thing any driver can do is be aware of the surroundings, pay attention to traffic, and make sure you you leave plenty of distance between your vehicle and a vehicle in front of you.

Continue reading "Rear-End Collision with Semi Leaves Chicagoan Dead" »

May 30, 2012

Abogado de choque de camión en Illinois alcanza un arreglo de $100,000

Abogado de accidente de camión en Chicago Gary Annes ha arreglado un caso para un conductor que resultó herido en una collisión de febrero, 2011. En este caso fue un camionero que resultó herido debido a las acciones de un conductor negligente.

Nuestro cliente estaba conduciendo un semi-tractor-remolque hacia el norte en la I-94 en el tercer carril de tráfico en el Condado de Kenosha, Wisconsin. El conductor de en-defecto estaba conduciendo un1997 Oldsmobile Regency en dirección norte en la I-94 en el primer carril de tráfico. Un tercer vehículo estaba conduciendo en dirección norte en el segundo carril del tráfico. En ese momento el acusado perdió el control de su vehículo y golpeó el vehículo en el segundo carril del tráfico. Este impacto causó que el vehículo girara y golpeara el camión del demandante con un impacto fuerte.

El diputado de investigacíon del Departamento de Sheriff del Condado de Kenosha determino que el conductor del Oldsmobile estaba conduciendo demasiado rápido para las condiciones y aún más falló de mantener el control de su vehículo. El diputado también encontró que el acusado no estaba asegurado. Quedó claro en los hechos indisputables que la única causa próxima del camión vs. accidente de coche fue la negligencia del conductor sin seguro.

El conductor del camion tuvo un inicio inmediato de dolor de cabeza, de espalda y hombro derecho. Poco después de la colisión él desarrolló dolor en la cadera derecha y dolor de tobillo derecho. Fue trasladado por ambulancia del lugar del incidente a la sala de emergencia del Hospital St. Catherine’s.

Continue reading "Abogado de choque de camión en Illinois alcanza un arreglo de $100,000" »

March 22, 2012

Illinois truck crash attorney reaches $100,000 settlement

Chicago truck accident lawyer Gary Annes has settled a case for a driver that was injured in a February, 2011 collision. In this case it was a trucker who was injured due to the actions of a negligent driver.

Our client was driving a semi-tractor-trailer northbound on I-94 in the third lane of traffic in Kenosha County, Wisconsin. The at-fault driver was operating a 1997 Oldsmobile Regency northbound on I-94 in the first lane of traffic. A third vehicle was driving northbound in the second lane of traffic.

At that time the defendant lost control of his vehicle and struck the vehicle in the second lane of traffic. This impact caused this vehicle to spin out and strike the plaintiff's truck with a heavy impact.

The investigating deputy from the Kenosha County Sheriff's Department determined that the Oldsmobile driver was speeding-driving too fast for conditions and further failed to maintain control of his vehicle. The deputy also found that the defendant was uninsured.

It was clear from the undisputed facts that the sole proximate cause of the truck vs. car accident was the negligence of the uninsured driver.

The truck driver had an immediate onset of severe head, back and right shoulder pain. Shortly after the collision he developed right hip pain and right ankle pain. He was taken by ambulance from the scene of the incident to St. Catherine’s Hospital’s Emergency Department.

Upon arrival at the Emergency Department a history was taken, he was examined and diagnostic tests were performed. The truck driver complained of severe head, back and right shoulder pain, as well as pain in his right hip and right ankle and pain with turning his head. X-rays showed separation of the acromioclavicular joint with the clavicle overriding the acromion in the right shoulder. His right arm was placed in a sling, he was given pain medication and muscle relaxants, told to stay off work and instructed to seek follow up care from an orthopedic surgeon.

Over the next couple of days the client's pain worsened, especially in his right shoulder. He followed up with a medical doctor on February 23, 2011. There he complained of severe right shoulder pain with some low back pain as well. An initial conservative course of treatment was recommended. He was instructed to keep his arm in the sling, prescribed pain medication, stay off work and to seek follow up care.

On March 3, 2011 the trucker sought follow up treatment from an orthopedic surgeon. His most significant complaint was of right shoulder pain, loss of range of motion and loss of strength. The surgeon initially diagnosed him with a right shoulder Grade I acromioclavicular strain, prescribed a course of physical therapy and kept him off work.

Despite his compliance with the course of physical therapy he had no improvement in his shoulder. Based upon updated diagnostic testing the surgeon determined that the plaintiff may have torn and stretched the ligaments of his shoulder. He prescribed new medication and a course of occupational therapy.

Again, despite the truck driver's compliance with the prescribed therapy he had no improvement in his shoulder pain. He went to see his primary care physician. He complained of right shoulder pain and head pain since the collision. His doctor instructed him to obtain a right shoulder MRI and head CT. There was a slight abnormality with the head CT and a brain MRI was ordered.

Following the head CT our client was seen by neurological surgeon on April 18, 2011. The doctor determined that the complaints of head pain were as a result of a concussion suffered in the motor vehicle collision.

The MRI revealed impingement in the shoulder. His orthopedic surgeon performed an injection of lidocaine into the shoulder on April 21, 2011. While there was some immediate pain relief, it only lasted a few days. The surgeon sent him for another course of therapy.

The orthopedic performed a second shoulder injection on June 16, 2011. Our client received limited relief from his shoulder pain with this second injection. The physician continued the plaintiff's medication and instructed him on a home exercise program. He diligently performed the recommended course of home exercises.

He last treated with his surgeon on September 26, 2011. He had been continuing with his home exercise program and his shoulder was improved with better range of motion. He was cleared to return to work and discharged.

Continue reading "Illinois truck crash attorney reaches $100,000 settlement " »

January 31, 2012

Truckers Required to Rest More by FMCSA to Help Reduce Risks of Trucking Accidents in Illinois, Nation

Trucking accidents are a top concern for safety officials. What's even more of a concern is tired truck drivers. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are roughly 100,000 police-reported accidents every year that are the direct result of a drowsy driver. These accidents result in nearly 2,000 fatalities, more than 70,000 injures and nearly $13 billion in monetary losses.

Those concerns are exacerbated when the driver is at the wheel of an 80,000-pound tractor-trailer.

Definitions of drowsy driving generally involve varying degrees of fatigue, sleepiness, and exhaustion. For the purpose of the discussion at hand, drowsy driving is simply driving in a physical state in which the driver's alertness is appreciably lower than it would be if the driver were “well rested” and “fully awake.”
mgymX0e.jpg
Our Chicago trucking accident lawyers understand that truckers face some tough schedules on the job. These drivers are oftentimes traveling our roadways on little to no sleep. Products are in demand and truckers are responsible for delivering the goods. Unfortunately, this demand often leads to fatigued and dangerous drivers. To help to reduce these accidents and to keep truck drivers awake and on their toes, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently issued a new rule to cut down on the number of hours that truck drivers are allowed to spend behind the wheel.

"Trucking is a difficult job, and a big rig can be deadly when a driver is tired and overworked," said U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.

The new hours of service (HOS) rule was finalized after the Administration held a number of public listening sessions across the nation. Within these sessions, trucking companies, employers, employees, safe driving advocates and members of the public were provided with an opportunity to bring up questions, comments and concerns regarding the issue and the dangers presented by tired truckers.

The Newly-Issued HOS Rule:

-Drivers' approved work weeks have been reduced by 12 hours, from 82 hours to 70 hours behind the wheel in a seven-day period.

-Drivers are not allowed to drive for more than 8 consecutive hours without taking a 30-minute break.

-Drivers are allowed to take a 30-minute break whenever they feel it's needed and whenever they feel drowsy.

-Drivers may drive only 11 hours a day. Researchers will be continuing research into the risks associated with an 11-hour work day.

-Drivers must rest for at least 2 nights when their 24-hour body clock demands sleep the most (from 1 to 5 a.m.).

-Drivers may use the restart provision once in a week.

-Fines for companies who violate the new rules will be strict. Companies can face maximum fines and punishments. Trucking companies can face fines of more than $10,000 for each offense. Drivers can face nearly fines of $3,000 for each offense.

Who is most at risk for drowsy driving?:

-People who drive after not getting enough sleep.

-Younger drivers. Drivers under the age of 30 are 4 times more likely to get into a drowsy driving accident.

-People who work long hours and shift workers.

-People who have undiagnosed or untreated sleep disorders. This accounts for roughly 40 million people.

-Business Travelers.

Continue reading "Truckers Required to Rest More by FMCSA to Help Reduce Risks of Trucking Accidents in Illinois, Nation" »

September 6, 2011

49-year-old woman killed in deadly Chicago-area truck accident

An Illinois truck crash on Illinois 394 has claimed the life of a 49-year-old woman, according to Fox news. The incident occurred on Friday around 6 PM during the evening rush hour.

A semi truck driver traveling north on the highway somehow lost control and drove cross the grassy center median into oncoming southbound traffic. This occurred just as the vehicle passed Glenwood Lansing Road.

After the truck entered the southbound lanes it collided with an SUV, which burst into flames, killing the driver. She has been identified as Mary Lacy. There were no passengers in the SUV. The truck came to a stop in the middle of the southbound lanes. The driver, a Valparaiso Indiana resident, was reportedly not hurt.

The Illinois State Police are handling the investigation and crash reconstruction. They're trying to figure out what caused the trucker to lose control.

It is being reported that several sand barrels were hit by the truck. The barrels were being used to mark a construction zone. The Fox news story is speculating that the truck driver possibly drifted off the side of the road, struck a guardrail and then lost control, driving across the median and into oncoming traffic.

Once the state police investigation has been completed, they should be able to determine if speed played a role in the crash.

Police are reportedly speaking with the trucker. They will also be checking his log books to see if fatigue may have been a factor, and they will also investigate whether he was on his cell phone or texting. There was supposedly no evidence of drugs or alcohol playing a role.

It has not been reported if a Chicago personal injury law firm is involved in the case yet or if there is a civil lawsuit on file.

After the crash, both sides of the highway had to be shut down for a period of time.

According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, in the year 2010 alone there were 10,343 accidents involving tractor-trailers. Of those truck accidents, 84 resulted in fatalities and 1,836 resulted in injuries.

The State of Illinois further reports that semi truck accidents made up 9.8% of all fatal crashes last year. The number of fatal tractor-trailer crashes increased by over 35% from the year 2009, with the number of fatalities going up by 50%, from 64 in 2009 to 96 in 2010.

Continue reading "49-year-old woman killed in deadly Chicago-area truck accident" »