August 26, 2014

Truck Driver Killed in Woodhull Truck Accident, Passenger Injured

by Levin & Perconti

While truck accidents seem to be all too frequent, especially in Illinois and throughout the Chicagoland area, and that we may not be able to prevent others from being negligent, there are things we can do to protect ourselves and less the danger that others' negligence poses to our safety. One of the best ways to do this is by wearing out seat belts so that we can be secure and safe in our vehicles. In these situations, even when we can do nothing to stop other drivers from being reckless, a safety belt can offer us some protection and save our lives.

When drivers and passengers fail to wear seat belts, they are much more vulnerable to the dangers around them, especially the potential for injury and death in a motor vehicle accident. According an article by the Quad-City Times, one person died and another was injured in a single truck accident in Woodhull on Interstate 74. According to preliminary reports by the state police, the truck veered and left the right side of the road for reasons unknown. The truck traveled into the east ditch and rolled over. Both occupants were transported to the local hospital where the driver was later pronounced dead. Police have reported that the driver was not wearing a seat belt, which could have contributed to his death. The accident still remains under investigation.

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August 25, 2014

Truck Driver Hailed As Heroic After Rescuing a Grandmother and Baby from Explosive Crash

by Levin & Perconti

It is too often that serious and fatal truck accidents are reported in the news and that we learn about deaths and injuries happening to innocent people. However, it is refreshing and enjoyable to report to our readers when such accidents have happy endings and lives are saved.

According to a recent article by Fox 13, a truck driver has been hailed for his heroic acts after a highway collision. A car slammed into a semi-truck and immediately exploded into flames. The truck driver ran from his truck to the car with a fire extinguisher and along with several witnesses pulled a grandmother and her one-year-old granddaughter to safety. As a result of helping one another, everyone survived this accident.

While in this accident it is unclear who was at fault, it is nevertheless admirable that an individual went into danger to save others. However, this is also a good opportunity to discuss with our readers a legal theory known as "duty of care" under tort law. We have often discussed that drivers have a legal duty of care when they get behind the wheel of the car and to drive in a safe manner as to not cause an accident and injury to others. The duty of care is a legal obligation imposed on individuals that requires them to adhere to a standard of reasonable care while performing acts that could foreseeably harm others. In a negligence lawsuit, the plaintiff must show that the defendant had a duty of care that was breached.

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August 22, 2014

Recent Accidents Highlight Trucking Safety Issues

by Levin & Perconti

Throughout the past few months, our law firm has frequently written about issues of negligence making truck accidents more frequent and especially dangerous. While it is not only truck drivers who are guilty of negligent acts like distracted driving, driving while fatigued, driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol, and driving for too many hours straight, recent accidents have brought truck safety to the spotlight. Such accidents have made the media and public focus on ways to increase safety in the trucking industry in order to decrease the number of lives lost each year due to negligence.

According to a recent article by the Supply Chain Digest, fatal truck accidents have been on the rise. This is especially important for lawmakers, truck companies, and all citizens to reflect on because truck accidents had been on the decline for over a decade and have now sharply increased. In fact, the national statistics for fatal accidents involving large trucks fell from 4573 in 2000 to 2983 in 2009, which was a decrease of 35%. However, after 2009, fatal truck accident again went on the rise. As of 2012, fatal accidents reported in at 3464, which was a 16% increase from 2009.

The article also breaks down how frequently these accidents occur. For the most part, the number of trucks on our highways has remained constant, despite some recovery from the recession. Even with the same number of trucks on the roads though, the number of fatalities has increased. Fatal accidents per million vehicle miles traveled has jumped from 1.03 in 2009 to 1.29 in 2012. This is approximately 9.4 fatal truck accidents per day in the United States, in addition to the 100,000 individuals that are injured every year in truck accidents.

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August 21, 2014

Chicago Woman Dies in Fatal Interstate Truck Accident

by Levin & Perconti

It is always unfortunate to report the death of a member of the Chicago community. This is especially true because these fatalities occur all too often, especially as the result of truck and motor vehicle accidents. This past week has been no different, as local news reports the death and injuries of several people in a semi-truck crash.

According to news from the Chicago Tribune, a Chicago woman was killed and three others were injured in a two-vehicle accident on Interstate 65. The report explains that a vehicle with a flat tire pulled over to the side of the interstate. The driver turned on the hazard lights and attempted to call authorities for assistant. However, while making the call, a semi-truck ran over the top of the vehicle. The front seat passenger of the vehicle was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. The others suffered injuries and required hospital care. As of now, no citations have been given, and police are still investigating the crash.

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August 15, 2014

57-Year-Old Woman Killed in I-80 Trucking Accident

by Levin & Perconti

Every week we hear in the news of truck and motor vehicle accidents that cause serious personal injuries or deaths, particularly on busy Chicago expressways. Unfortunately, these accidents are often preventable. Too often drivers engage in dangerous driving habits such as texting and driving, driving while tired, excessive speeding, and following too closely. When drivers act in this reckless manner and are the cause of an accident and injury to others, they can be found liable for negligence. All drivers, truck drivers and drivers of passenger vehicles alike, need always remain cautious and vigilant, particularly on busy expressways where accidents can easily occur.

A recent article by the Chicago Tribune reports that a 57-year-old woman was killed in a crash near the Illinois-Indiana border on Interstate 80. According to Illinois State Police, a car and semitrailer collided in the early morning near the state line. The woman died from blunt force trauma in the accident.

Truck accidents are extremely dangerous and can cause victims to suffer serious personal injuries or fatalities. Oftentimes victims suffer life-threatening or permanent injuries such as broken bones, loss of limbs, paralysis, or damages to vital areas of the body like the head and neck. Although uncontrollable factors such as weather or poor road conditions can lead to crashes, many accidents unfortunately occur as a result of preventable negligence such as driver distraction, fatigue or intoxication.

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August 14, 2014

Driver Critically Injured in Route 15 Truck Accident

by Levin & Perconti

Our readers know that truck accidents can have devastating affects on individuals who are injured as a result of truck driver negligence such as speeding, drowsy driving, or distracted driving. However, it is also important to consider how these accidents also impact the lives and safety of truck drivers too. Just as drivers of motor vehicles can be injured or killed from truck accidents, truck drivers can also be left with life-threating or permanent injuries caused by the negligence of others.

According to a recent article by Fox 2 Now, a truck driver was critically injured in a crash on Illinois Route 15 north of St. Libory. According to local authorities, the driver of a southbound slammed into the front of the semi-trailer as she attempted to turn west onto Illinois Route 15. The driver of the truck was airlifted to a local hospital and remains in critical condition. The accident is still under investigation.

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August 13, 2014

Three Injured in Dan Ryan Rollover Accident

by Levin & Perconti

It is all too often that our attorneys read about truck and motor vehicle accidents occurring on Chicago area interstates. Accidents that occur on these roads can be extremely dangerous as the roads are often congested with vehicles travelling at high speeds. Some of the most dangerous accidents are those that involve large trucks.

According to recent reports by CBS Chicago, three people suffered personal injuries after a semi-truck flipped on top of their car on the Chicago Dan Ryan expressway. The accident occurred on the inbound Dan Ryan Expressway near 47th Street. The three victims were hospitalized, and the accident caused traffic to up to 95th Street. According to a police report, the northbound car swerved and struck the semi-tractor-trailer truck that was also heading northbound. This caused both vehicles to strike the median, and the semi rolled over, spilling some of the dried concrete it was transporting. The driver of the car was cited with improper lane usage.

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August 8, 2014

Rollover Accident Results in Beer Truck Spill on I-65

by Levin & Perconti

On our truck accident blog we frequently remind readers of the dangers of truck accidents, especially those involving large trucks such as semis. A major reason these accidents are so dangerous is the size of the trucks as they are extremely large in height and weight. Oftentimes, these traits of a truck leave victims involved in collisions with these vehicles facing life-threatening or permanent personal injuries. However, it is important to consider that the purpose of large trucks is often to carry significant amounts of cargo. When a truck is transporting cargo and winds up in an accident, this cargo can spill and become an additional danger to people or the environment and may require intensive cleanup to make the roadways safe for travel again.

According to a recent story by CBS Chicago, a beer truck was in a rollover accident on I-65. As a result of rolling over, the semi-truck spilled part of its load and blocked the northbound traffic. According to reports, the truck driver was heading north in the left lane of I-65 when, upon adjusting his radio, the truck drifted off the roadway. The driver then overcorrected to the right and lost control of the semi. The truck then went into the median, rolled over, and slid approximately 200 feet. The driver has been cited for unsafe lane movement.

As our readers are well aware, distracted driving is a major factor in truck and motor vehicle accidents. As exemplified in this rollover accident, it takes only a moment for a serious collision to occur when a driver takes his or her eyes off the road. Looking away from the road for just a few seconds can result in drifting or not noticing the need to stop to avoid collision. Oftentimes, when the driver realizes that something is wrong, it can be too late and the driver will panic and end up in a collision.

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August 1, 2014

Semi-Truck Driver Flees Fatal Accident

by Levin & Perconti

Trucking accidents caused as a result of driver fatigue and hit and run incidents are two issues that we frequently discuss on this blog. Our lawyers hope that by drawing attention to the issues, we can educate drivers about the dangers and prevent future accidents Unfortunately, in a recent incident both of these factors were at play.

According to a recent article by KMOV.com, a fatal semi-truck accident occurred on Interstate 70. The local authorities explained that an Impala was driving westbound on the interstate when the driver lost control, swerved to the right and then the left, and was then struck by a semi-truck. Following the collision, the semi-truck fled the scene and did not stop to attend to the accident. After this semi-truck hit and ran from the accident, a second semi-truck hit the Impala, which caused it to go into a ravine and the semi-truck to roll over.

Illinois State Police have hypothesized that the cause of the crash may be due to the driver of the Impala falling asleep just prior to the first collision. He had just completed an overnight shift at a fast food restaurant. After the collision he was pronounced dead at the scene.

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July 31, 2014

Bicyclist Dragged by Garbage Truck Suffers Personal Injuries

by Levin & Perconti

Bicycling serves many positive purposes in people’s lives. It is a source of exercise and fun activity to share with family and friends. In addition to leisure or exercise, it is also a source of transportation. By cycling instead of taking a car, we also help the environment by reducing carbon emissions. However, because we share our roads with large motor vehicles, dangers can be presented to many cyclists and bike accidents can occur.

In a recent bicycle accident, a man was dragged by a garbage truck and suffered personal injuries, according to an article by the Boston Globe. The cyclist was using a bicycle rented from the city’s bike-sharing program, similar to that of Divvy of Chicago. The accident occurred after a garbage truck made a turn at an intersection, which caused the bicyclist to be dragged underneath with his leg trapped. Firefighters had to extricate the cyclist from the truck, which took half of an hour.

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July 25, 2014

4 Dead and 4 Injured in Elwood Semi Truck Accident

by Levin & Perconti

It has been an unfortunate trend in the news as of lately to hear stories of accidents involving truck drivers who are both driving fatigued and falsifying their log book records, thereby fraudulently driving over the permitted amount of hours. As a result of this negligence and recklessness, many innocent people have suffered personal injuries and untimely deaths. Like the incident that happened this past winter on I-88 in Aurora, another similar incident of falsified log books has occurred in the Chicago area.

According to an article by NBC Chicago the Illinois State Police reported that a semi-truck driver was going faster than the posted construction site speed limit and slammed into a car. This caused a chain reaction crash with three other vehicles and another semi-truck. As a result of this accident, four Illinois residents were killed and four others suffered personal injuries. Several required being extricated from the crashed vehicles, and one was airlifted to the local hospital.

According to the same article, the driver of the tractor-trailer was charged and now held on a $1 million bail. He was charged with falsifying his log book, willful violation of a log book, and failure to reduce speed. He had started work at about 2:30 a.m., not 6:30 a.m. Furthermore, this individual had a history of traffic violations going back to 1991, including three for speeding and others for driving without a valid license and other commercial vehicle violations.

This accident leads many to question why this driver, who has a record of being reckless, was permitted to operate a commercial vehicle and pose a danger to others on the highways. Not only did he have a history of violations that posed safety hazards to many on the roads, but despite his many run-ins with the law, this driver has continued to present a threat through falsified log books and excessive speeding.

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July 23, 2014

I-57 Rollover Dump Truck Accident Results in Fatality

by Levin & Perconti

As our readers know, rollover accidents are incredibly dangerous. Often occurring in large tall vehicles like trucks and SUVs, these accidents can cause drivers and passengers to suffer serious personal injury or death due to the violent nature of these crashes. These accidents can and do occur to both commercial and regular drivers alike. Furthermore, as Chicago and the surrounding area is heavy with traffic going in and out of the city on our large and busy interstates and highways, rollover accidents are unfortunately common in our area as well.

According to a recent article by the Chicago Tribune, one person was killed in a rollover accident that occurred on I-57 in Markham. The accident took place at 159th street and shut down all lanes of traffic on the highway. Preliminary information indicates that the dump truck appeared to have rolled over the left side of the concrete median on the road, according to the Illinois State Police. After rolling over, the truck set on fire, and trapped the driver inside.

As made evident by this example, the aftermath of rollover accidents can also pose hazards to those surrounding the accident. Here, the truck immediately caught fire as a result of the rollover, killing the driver and posing harm to all who were close by. Furthermore, as a result of rolling over, the dump truck spilled its cargo all over the highway, resulting in a danger to those driving through. Upon rolling over, the dump truck spilled a significant amount of gravel throughout the lanes. Other rollover accidents pose similar threats, from spilled cargo, to presenting obstacles and hazards to other drivers from debris.

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