When it comes to semi trucks, trailers, or other large commercial vehicles, our Illinois truck accident attorneys can all agree that driving trucks attentively and responsibility is crucial for the safety of the driver and all motorists on roadways, and that negligent driving may result in serious injury or fatalities. However, many truck accidents are caused by issues with trucks themselves, such as weight, size, or potential equipment malfunctions. This was the case last week when a semi trailer struck an overpass due to its height in East Peoria, Illinois. Mortontimesnews.com released that a 37-year old driver was traveling eastbound on Interstate 74 at the Pinecrest overpass around 8pm. Police say he was driving a truck tractor semi-trailer transporting a number of sport utility vehicles. His cargo was over the legal height limit and as a result struck an overpass, causing extensive damage to three of the vehicles being transported on the truck.
The driver did not suffer serious injuries, but according to preliminary information from the Illinois State Police District 8, he was issued a citation for having a semi trailer/auto hauler that was over its legal height. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) inspected the bridge for structural damage after the accident and determined it was safe.
In addition to this accident, our Chicago truck accident attorneys learned about two fatal accidents that occurred when trucks that had their hydraulic lifts raised slammed into overpasses. According to IDOT, statistics show such accidents are on the rise. Although some states maintain a variety of standards governing bridge clearances and truck height, most accidents are the result of stacking cargo too high, improperly marking low clearance bridges, or raised hydraulic lifts. The frequency of these accidents is a cause for concern and many believe that examining truck safety requirements is necessary for Illinois drivers, as well as truck drivers throughout the country.
The American Society of Civil Engineers agrees that these accidents are increasing and have proposed a bridge bumper system to decrease the impact of such collisions. According to Tribtoday.com, they have indicated that investing in this system would compensate for the losses in bridge repair, road closure, property damage, and personal injury.
As far as equipment malfunctions go, our Illinois truck accident lawyers believe it is important that truck companies are doing what they can to help drivers remain safe behind the wheel. These safety precautions include alarms sounding when seatbelts aren’t fastened, tilt bed warning lights being used to warn truck drivers when their lift is not secured, and specifically relating to the above reports, having trucks automatically shut off after reaching certain speeds with their hydraulic arms deployed to avoid accidents caused by height problems.
Accidents caused by equipment malfunctions or safety hazards should not be increasing in Illinois; truck accidents caused by negligent motorists are already too common and can result in life altering consequences. Those who have been injured an accident due to a negligent truck driver have the right to seek compensation for their injuries. Our Illinois truck accident lawyers represent those who have suffered personal injury medical expenses, or property damage as the result of a trucking accident. We are prepared to inform you of your rights and ultimately offer you the resources you need to seek legal action.
If you or a loved one has suffered injury from an accident due to a negligent motorist, please contact our Illinois accident lawyers at Levin & Perconti to learn about what compensation may be available to you.