The trucking industry is vital to the American economy and is responsible for the transit of a large amount of goods across the nation. From coast-to-coast, trucks take to the roads and haul everything from produce to textiles to machinery, enabling work to get done and products to reach consumers.
But trucks have plenty of drawbacks as well as the benefits they provide. When compared to a typical passenger vehicle, trucks are large, heavy, and difficult to operate. They require additional maintenance to keep them moving and they are harder to start and stop than a car. And the most troubling thing about trucks is the threat they pose to public safety.
Every day, motorists in Illinois come face-to-face with trucks on the state’s streets, expressways, and interstates. Fortunately, the majority of these incidents are benign with both the trucks and the passenger vehicles going their own way, without incident and without a collision. Unfortunately, not everyone is that lucky and accidents involving semi-trucks still occur with regularity in Illinois and especially in Chicago.
Legal implications stem from the majority of crashes involving trucks and can take on multiple forms. In some instances, one or more drivers may receive a citation that can lead to traffic charges, the loss of a driver’s license, fines, fees, or other penalties. In other cases, a driver might face criminal charges for his or her conduct behind the wheel and the nature of those charges could determine the punishment that results, including incarceration. But one type of fallout that is anticipated with less frequency than those previously mentioned is the possibility of a civil claim for relief brought by the victims in a crash.
State and federal laws attempt to hold negligent parities liable for the harm they cause when a truck crash takes place, and one way of doing that is allowing injured victims to seek financial compensation for the harm they sustained. Victims of truck incidents are protected by numerous provisions that let them seek relief for all of their damages including medical expenses incurred, rehabilitation costs that are necessary, missed wages, and pain and suffering. In the tragic incident that a victim loses his or her life, the right to seek compensation may belong to that victim’s surviving family members, though no amount of payment can ever be considered adequate in those cases.
National laws and requirements on truckers set a minimum level of insurance that must be carried and maintained by those who operate trucks in the United States. The Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration, a national agency, requires trucks to maintain insurance up to $750,000 per accident, but this amount has not been adjusted for inflation in 35 years. Add to that the fact that many serious truck accidents produce injuries in excess of this amount and you can understand why it is important to obtain sound legal advice if you have been hurt in a collision.
The law firm of Abels & Annes, P.C. prides itself on fighting for the rights of those who have been hurt in collisions involving trucks and if you have been injured, we want to fight for you as well. We offer a free, no-obligation case consultation to those who call us toll free at (855) 529-2442 or locally at (312) 924-7575 and we keep a licensed lawyer standing by 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
When you have questions or when you need help, call Abels & Annes, P.C. and let us help you move beyond your accident and towards a recovery that you deserve.
Prior Blog Entry:
Are Chicago Taxi Cabs a Safe Way to Experience the City?, Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published September 14, 2015.