A legal settlement has been reached on behalf of the family of a trucking accident victim. Our Chicago trucking accident attorneys recently read a report on DigitalJournal.com detailing the settlement, which has been acknowledged to be the first verdict in which the issue of driver sleep apnea was found to be the most likely cause of death. A $3.25 million settlement has been issued to the accident victim’s family in what is to be believed a settlement that will have a national impact on the trucking industry.
The accident transpired in May 2010 when the accident victim and his wife were traveling along an interstate highway when traffic came to a stop through a construction zone. A semi tractor-trailer traveling behind the accident victim’s passenger vehicle failed to notice the reduced speed in traffic and crashed his 18 wheeler truck into the passenger vehicle while traveling at 65 mph – the speed in which the truck’s cruise control was engaged. The driver of the motor vehicle sustained traumatic personal injuries that ultimately lead to his untimely death.
During an investigation into the devastating accident, our Illinois truck accident attorneys read that it was revealed that the semi truck driver had suffered from severe uncontrolled sleep apnea at the time of the collision. The driver of the tractor-trailer had also been fired from his previous job for refusing to participate in a sleep study to determine sleep apnea. Before he was hired by his current trucking company, thirty other companies had refused to hire him due to his sleep apnea condition.
As part of the settlement of the trucking accident lawsuit, the defendant trucking company has agreed to implement several actions in order to further protect motorists from the common and threatening dangers associated with sleep apnea and truck drivers. Some of the trucking company’s actions include: implementing positive steps to help educate trucking drivers about the dangers of sleep apnea – including treatment that can be done so a driver may still be able to qualify to drive a commercial vehicle; examining trucking operations and policies under the guidance of a nationally recognized sleep apnea expert; in addition to, using information learned through the sleep apnea expert to lobby for changes in trucking regulations and industry practice.
Despite the tragic consequences of such a devastating trucking accident, our accident lawyers in Chicago are pleased to learn that proper steps are being implemented in order to avoid any additional fatalities or injuries that commonly result from semi truck accidents due to driver sleep apnea.