Articles Posted in Automobile Accident

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Imagine this, you are driving down the road, when all of a sudden a large mattress flies into your path causing you to quickly swerve out of your lane and, in turn, results in a horrible accident with two other vehicles! Accidents caused by road debris can be serious and sometimes fatal! As discussed below, accidents caused by road debris happen often.

Road debris varies in form. Road debris can be in the form of a shredded tire, a couch, tools, refrigerator, wood, animals, et cetera (essentially anything that falls into, or enters, the road).

You may sometimes be surprised with the road debris you encounter. For instance, a couple weeks ago, a tractor-trailer rolled over while traveling on Interstate 70 in a rural section of Illinois. The driver allegedly swerved to miss a dear when his truck flipped on its side on top of a median. While the tractor-trailer was on its side, about 11 head of cattle perished on a westbound stretch of the Interstate. The cattle wandered into oncoming traffic! The truck driver was not injured but oncoming cars hit some cattle.     

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Our attorneys stand by the belief that hit-and-run accidents are morally unacceptable and should be reckoned for under the law. When a driver causes injury to another on the road in a motor vehicle accident as a result of negligence or reckless driving, he or she may be held liable for the victim’s injuries. When a driver flees the scene of an accident, they are evading their legal duty to that victim and running from legal accountability and our attorneys believe in fighting for victims in order to hold wrongdoers accountable and obtain justice in a court of law.

According to recent news by ABC, a semi-truck driver was recently arrested for a fatal hit-and-run accident. The suspect allegedly hit two vehicles and fled the scene of the accident last Thursday. Highway patrol officers reported that the semi-truck was heading north in the early morning hours and ran a red light, hitting an SUV and sedan. The driver of the sedan died upon impact, and the two people in the SUV suffered personal injuries but survived.

The same article reports that one witness to the accident followed the semi-truck after the collision. The witness chased the semi-driver for about a half mile to a street corner. The witness apparently yelled in front of him to pull over, but feared the semi-truck driver was going to run him off of the road. When the driver eventually approached the truck, the driver denied that he had hit anyone and ran from the scene.

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Truck accidents on interstates are especially dangerous and can be fatal or result in injuries such as permanent nerve damage, burns, and broken bones. Such injuries take a very long recovery time, and sometimes victims may never fully heal to how they were before the accident.

Fortunately, one couple who was involved in a life-threatening truck accident survived with only minor injuries, according to an article by ABC News. The couple was traveling north on I-75 when a semi-truck crushed their compact car against the highway’s concrete barrier. They were then pinned underneath the large truck. Firefighters had to cut the door off of the victims’ car in order to pull them out of it.

Relatively speaking (compared to the types of injuries that can occur from such a severe crash), the couple received minor injuries. One individual had a broken arm, and the other had a gash to the head. Both injuries were fortunately deemed as non-life-threatening by medical professionals.

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As of lately, many of us have heard and read about the dangers of “distracted driving” along with the heavy penalties that go along with it. At the start of the new year of 2014, Illinois enacted a new law increasing the punishments for texting or talking on the phone while driving, with motive to prevent future personal injuries or fatalities from motor vehicle accidents that result from distracted driving.

According to the Illinois Government News Network, the Illinois law will increase penalties imposed on drivers whose use of an electronic device while driving causes an accident. Furthermore, if the accident causes severe personal injuries, the driver can be sentenced up to a year in prison, and a fatal accident can result in prison for one to three years. The previous law only charged drivers with traffic violations. Now, to avoid such penalties, drivers must use hands-free devices, such as headsets or a function in the car dashboard that permits making a call with a single button.

According to ABC 27, an out-of-state distracted truck driver’s negligence claimed the lives of two individuals in a tragic accident that could have been prevented. The four-vehicle crash claimed the lives of a husband and wife, leading state police to file vehicular homicide charges against a trucker who was texting while driving. The truck driver rear-ended the victim’s SUV, pushing it into another truck, which then collided with a third truck. The truck driver was also charged with involuntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment, and reckless driving.

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The Midwest has been hit hard with winter weather conditions with snow accumulation. Dozens of accidents have recently occurred on the Illinois-Wisconsin border in Southeast Wisconsin. According to NBC Chicago, during the recent snow, several people were injured and one person was killed due to hazardous driving conditions on the roadways. The snow has continued to move through, and over the weekend the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation has deployed 200 plows and salt spreaders.

Over the weekend, accidents were reported to have occurred along various interstates, including 94, 894, and I-90 and I-39. The Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office reported that a fatal rollover occurred among multiple pileups, along I-94 eastbound at Highway 100. Due to multiple accidents, many stretches of highway required closing.

Just on Sunday, December 8th, 38 accidents occurred between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. on the Milwaukee County Freeway system. 29 of those crashes involved disabled vehicles in which passengers had to be physically removed by local authorities. There were more than 7 semis and more than 30 cars involved in accidents. One vehicle even included an entire bus of people.

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Chain-reaction crashes can lead to serious injury and even death, especially when involving semis. The need to transport goods via semis in addition to winter conditions can pose a lot of risks to both truck drivers and other motor vehicles on the highways.

According to the Dayton Daily News, two individuals were injured as the result of a crash involving for semitrailers on Interstate 75 in Wapakoneta, Ohio. It was reported that one vehicle was struck from behind and it slowed to enter a construction area. The next vehicle did not slow in time to avoid the collision. The following semi was following too closely and could also not avoid a collision. The two individuals that were injured as a result of the accident required hospital care.

This crash then created a chain reaction, causing two more vehicles to become involved in the crash. Many local authorities had to rush to the scene, including the highway patrol, the department of transportation, the state emergency management agency, and fire and EMS crews from three neighboring cities.

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News Democrat recently reported that a man was struck and killed on Friday when he was running across Interstate 270, just east of Illinois 157. According to an Illinois State Police spokesman, a car collided with a semi tractor-trailer at about 6:20am, causing minimal damage to both vehicles. The driver of the car proceeded to pull off the interstate onto the left shoulder while the driver of the semi pulled onto the right shoulder. The driver of the car then tried to check on the semi truck driver and ran across the interstate where he was struck by a pick-up truck.

The man was fatally injured and was pronounced dead at the scene by the Madison County Coroner’s Office. The police spokesman stated, “There’s a slight rise there in the road and it appears that he couldn’t see oncoming traffic.” He said the driver of the tractor-trailer was not injured and no citations would be issued in relation to the accident. Interstate traffic was reportedly diverted onto Illinois 157 for more than three hours after the accident.

Though it is not stated who was specifically the cause of either accident, an obvious factor that played a part in the death of the car driver was his decision to attempt to walk across the interstate. Pedestrian accidents on interstate highways are actually quite common; according to the Illinois Department of Transportation, more than ten percent of pedestrian fatalities occur on highways. The most common reason for pedestrians to be on the highway is when they find a need to walk across it, as seen in the above accident when the car driver walked across the interstate to check on the semi truck driver. Given the speed of other vehicles on the roadway, many motorists don’t even see these pedestrians until it is too late.

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As we are amidst one of the most active periods of the year for wildlife activity in the Midwest, motorists can expect to see more wildlife animals crossing roadways than usual; specifically, deer make up the majority of these animals. While our attorneys continue to warn drivers of the potential dangers associated with an increase in wildlife, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) recently announced that serious accidents, injuries, and fatalities in accidents involving deer actually declined last year.

Accidents involving deer were responsible for six fatalities in 2012, a decrease from 10 fatalities in 2011. Injuries due to an accident involving a deer decreased from 634 in 2011 to 613 in 2012 as well. Though the number of deer-vehicle accidents slightly increased from 2011 to 2012, an overall decrease is represented since 2009. Statistics from IDOT show that out of the ten worst states for animal collisions, Illinois ranks third. Illinois’ top three counties for collisions involving deer in 2011 were Cook, Madison, and Peoria, ranging from about 400-500 collisions throughout the year. About three in every four crashes occurred on rural roadways and 71% occurred at twilight or nighttime.

Steps that you can take to avoid a collision with a deer include being cautious at dusk and dawn when deer are most active, keeping track of locations where deer have been spotted, reducing speed and being prepared to stop in areas with high levels of wildlife activity, avoiding swerving into traffic or off the road if you encounter a deer, and flashing your headlights and honking your car horn to encourage deer to move off the road.

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Reviewatlas.com recently reported on an accident that occurred between a car and a pickup truck on Monday night just north of Roseville. Illinois State Police say an unidentified passenger-vehicle driver was traveling on Business Route U.S. 67 at 6:50pm when it was struck by an oncoming extended cab pickup truck, driven by a 55-year old man of Roseville.

Our Chicago truck accident law firm learned that according to a statement made by authorities, the driver of the passenger vehicle was traveling in the right lane and attempted to pass another car “at a high rate of speed” when it approached the oncoming pickup truck. It then veered back into the right lane, but “spun out clockwise back across the centerline and in a collision course with the truck” (Review Atlas). Police say the front of the pickup then struck the vehicle’s passenger side.

The driver of the passenger vehicle was pronounced dead at the scene. The pickup truck driver was transported to a nearby medical center and was treated for non-life threatening injuries; he was listed as in stable condition Monday night. Police say both drivers were wearing seat belts at the time of the accident, but an investigation is ongoing to determine if alcohol was a factor in the crash.

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Cbsnews.com reports that four Chicago-area teens from Wilmington High School were killed last Tuesday when their vehicle overturned and plunged into Forked Creek. An accident attorney at our firm learned that the victims, two boys and two girls ranging from fifteen to seventeen years old, left their homes on Monday evening and never returned. A bus driver near Ballou Road spotted their car and bodies around 7:30am Tuesday morning in Wilmington, about fifty miles southwest of Chicago. A tow truck was called to pull the car from the water, and officials worked to remove the bodies from the wreck. The cause of the accident is currently unknown, but police believe there may have been run-off water coming over the roadway from the creek and possible ice that contributed to the vehicle overturning.

The occurrence of this accident was especially significant for our lawyers because the teenagers were among fifteen who have been killed in three major accidents since last week. Five teens were killed in Texas when their vehicle ran a stop sign and collided with a fuel tanker truck. That same day, six Ohio teens were killed when their SUV sped off a stretch of roadway at eighty miles per hour and flipped into a pond.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety states that teen deaths from motor vehicle crashes have been declining in all parts of the country, dropping from 8,748 in 1975 to 3,115 in 2010. However, the risk of being in an accident is three times higher for teens than any other group of drivers. Accident injuries are the leading cause of death for individuals aging from thirteen to nineteen years old. Even more, Illinois ranks twelfth in the country for fatalities in crashes involving young drivers by state.