Bnd.com recently reported that a wrongful death suit was filed on Wednesday following the death of Illinois State Trooper after he was struck by a semi truck. Our Chicago wrongful death attorneys read that the 32-year old trooper and former Madison County Sheriff’s deputy was killed in late November while he was executing a traffic stop on Interstate 55 near Litchfield, Illinois. The suit has been filed on behalf of the trooper’s widow against the truck driver and the trucking company.
According to authorities, the driver was driving a semi-tractor trailer for DOT Foods when he hit the trooper on the shoulder of the highway, killing him upon impact. The driver reportedly suffered from an unknown medical condition that may have caused him to black out and lose control of his truck. The suit alleges DOT Foods acted improperly because it allowed the driver to operate his truck when he knew he was “medically unfit to do so” and was an “imminent danger to the public.”
The truck company’s corporate counsel could not be reached for comment regarding the accident. However, the victim’s family’s attorney stated that the trucking company is always looking for someone to drive their trucks. She asserts that trucking companies can’t keep up with the demand for drivers and ensuring drivers are healthy would cost too much, leaving unsafe drivers in control of tractor-trailers.
There are many factors that come to play when a wrongful death suit similar to the one above is filed. A primary issue that needs to be addressed is if the trucking company knew the driver had the medical condition that he did. If so, the company had a responsibility to prevent him from driving. If not, the question of whether or not the driver’s condition could have been recognized by annual physicals or other trucking regulations enforced by the company needs to be asked. Finally, it is important to determine if the driver’s condition was the type that would prevent him from operating his vehicle properly.
In a case similar to the above, our law firm would perform a thorough and complete investigation into the fitness of the truck driver and whether the trucking company had knowledge of the driver’s physical well being. We would also determine whether the company complied with all state and federal regulations, and adhered to its own internal policies and procedures.
Wrongful death cases, commonly filed by a family member of a victim, can be used to recover monetary damages such as medical expenses or funeral bills, or pain suffered by survivors of the victim. We have seen the devastation that reckless behavior behind the wheel can cause and have represented numerous families in various cases. In 2010, John Perconti obtained $6.5 million in a settlement for the family of a 32-year old woman who was killed in an accident with a semi-truck, including personal injuries suffered by her husband and child. The wrongful death portion of the settlement,$4.7 million, was the highest wrongful death settlement ever recorded in Kane County, Illinois.
If you have lost a loved one in a trucking accident due to the negligence or carelessness of the driver, please contact our law firm for more information. We have the experience necessary to help your family recuperate after the loss of a loved one, in addition to uncovering the act of negligence that caused the accident. Find out what rights may be available to you.