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Truck Accidents That Involve Drivers Under the Influence

Dave Abels Lawyer
Truck Accident Lawyer, Dave Abels

Across the United States, truck drivers spend long hours on the road and away from their families. Spending all day on the road can raise stress levels considerably, adding to the sense of loneliness or regret when missing life events at home. Truck drivers, to alleviate that loneliness, may turn to drinking. Around the world, as many as 91 percent of truck drivers admit to abusing alcohol on the job.

When drug tested, a study found that 12.5 percent of American truck drivers tested positive for alcohol. Unsurprisingly, those truck drivers may have a substantially higher accident risk than their sober counterparts. If you suffered injuries in a drunk driving accident with a truck driver, contact a truck accident lawyer.

How Alcohol Increases Accident Risk

Every year, more than 10,000 people die and thousands more suffer severe injuries as a result of accidents related to drinking and driving. Even a seemingly low blood alcohol content can impact a truck driver’s ability to drive safely, inhibiting decision-making skills and leading to poor choices on the road.

As alcohol use increases, driving use can decrease along with it. Drunk drivers may:

  • Experience severe loss of motor control. Many drunk drivers, especially truck drivers, struggle with the motor skills needed to successfully navigate on the road.
  • Suffer decreased reaction time. Drinking and driving can slow reactions substantially. As blood alcohol content increases, truck drivers may struggle to control their vehicles, especially as they need to respond to the actions of other drivers on the road.
  • Impaired decision-making skills. Drunk drivers have a higher likelihood of speeding, running red lights, or failing to follow other traffic rules. They may also experience an increased likelihood of road rage.
  • Narrowed field of vision. After consuming high quantities of alcohol, the driver’s eyes may not focus as effectively. Poor focus can make it harder to judge the road and other vehicles on it.

Drinking on a regular basis can create a false sense of security, especially for truckers who regularly drink and drive. Over time, the trucker may grow overconfident, increasing alcohol consumption without regard for how it impacts his or her ability to safely navigate on the road. For truck drivers, who drive extremely large vehicles that require more coordination and skill to maneuver, this may substantially increase accident risk and the severity of the injuries associated with those accidents.

Common Injuries from Drunk Truck Driver Accidents

Drunk truck drivers plus large vehicles amount to a dangerous combination on the road. Not only can drunk truck drivers face more challenges navigating the road safely, but also big trucks often cause more serious injuries when involved in an accident.

Injuries may include:

  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Burns, including chemical burns from tanker truck cargo and friction burns
  • Amputations
  • Broken bones
  • Internal injuries
  • Soft tissue damage

Filing a Claim After a Drunk Truck Driver Accident

Serious injuries after an accident with a drunk truck driver can leave you with heavy financial burdens. Filing a personal injury claim can help you seek compensation for those injuries.

Who bears legal liability for an accident with a drunk truck driver?

Typically, in a drunk driving accident, including one involving a truck, the drunk driver and trucking company bears liability for the accident. Drunk drivers may also face serious criminal penalties in addition to the civil damages that they may end up owing any victims. In some cases, however, factors other than driver error can contribute to drunk driving accidents, changing the balance of liability.

Consider the following:

  • Mechanical failures that caused or contributed to the accident
  • Improperly-loaded cargo
  • A trucking company that required the driver to drive in spite of inebriation or had other unrealistic requirements for the driver

Consult with an attorney if you believe other factors may have contributed to your drunk truck driver accident. An attorney can help you identify all parties who bear liability for your accident and, therefore, help maximize the compensation you may receive for your injuries. Keep in mind, however, that each case turns on its specific circumstances, and no one can guarantee you a favorable result in your case.

How much compensation should I expect from a drunk truck driver accident?

Your compensation after a drunk truck driver accident will vary. Truck drivers and trucking companies usually carry substantial insurance coverage to help protect accident victims.

Most people, when filing a personal injury claim after a truck driving accident, include the following:

  • All medical expenses related to injuries sustained in the accident, including emergency treatment, ongoing medical care, therapy, and the cost of durable medical equipment
  • Payment for wages lost due to the accident, including time hospitalized or unable to work during recovery
  • Lost earning potential if your injuries permanently prevent you from returning to work
  • Compensation for pain and suffering resulting from the accident

Consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer before pursuing compensation for your drunk truck driver accident. An attorney can help provide you with a full breakdown of the compensation you should expect for your injuries.

Should I accept the insurance company’s settlement offer?

Some insurance companies may contact you shortly after you suffer injuries in an accident with one of the drivers the company covers, especially if the driver showed signs of inebriation at the time of the accident. Do not accept this offer without consulting an attorney first. Often, insurance companies will attempt to minimize the compensation that they offer, especially in the early days after an accident. Instead, consult with an attorney to learn what compensation you should expect, including when to accept an offer.

Do You Need an Attorney After a Drunk Driving Accident with a Truck?

Yes. You will need legal assistance to help you seek the compensation you deserve after an accident with a drunk truck driver. An experienced personal injury attorney can provide valuable legal advice, help you understand the compensation you deserve after an accident, and fight for you if your claim needs to go to court.


Abels & Annes, P.C.
100 N LaSalle St #1710
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 924-7575

How to Preserve Evidence for a Truck Accident Claim

Dave Abels Lawyer
Truck Accident Lawyer, Dave Abels

When you are involved in an accident, everything happens very quickly at the scene of the accident, and important evidence can be lost.

While your first step should be to ensure the safety of you and your passengers, there are some important steps that you can take at the scene of the accident, and following the accident, to ensure the preservation of important evidence if you file a truck accident claim in the future.

Preserving Evidence Matters With Truck Accidents

More than 10 percent of roadway accidents in Illinois involve a tractor-trailer, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation. These scenes are often chaotic and may involve more than two vehicles. Because it is initially difficult to determine who caused an accident, preservation of evidence matters. Once you feel confident that you’re in a safe place following your accident, you should start to take proactive steps to prevent the destruction of evidence.

While at the scene of the accident, you should:

  • Photograph the scene. Photographing the scene of the accident is important. Taking photos of signage near the scene, the vehicles involved in the accident, and the location of the accident may prove useful later.
  • Obtain contact information. You should obtain contact information from all drivers, passengers, and witnesses to the accident. Additionally, you should request information regarding the truck driver’s employer.
  • Accurate police report. An accurate report to police is a crucial step in the preservation of evidence at the scene. Do not accept blame for the accident. Use caution answering questions, providing only facts, not opinions.
  • Seek medical attention. As quickly as possible, seek medical attention if needed. Whether you are transported via ambulance, or you take yourself, see a doctor immediately and let him or her know about any pain or discomfort. Make sure it is documented by the medical professionals that you have been involved in a truck accident.

Preserving Non-Scene Evidence

After you seek medical care, you need to take additional steps to ensure that there is no evidence destroyed or altered before a truck accident claim. Keep in mind, while a trucking company has records preservation rules, some may get destroyed before you have to file a claim within the Illinois statutes of limitations.

Here are some things that need to be done after the fact to ensure the preservation of evidence following a truck accident:

  • Contact a truck accident attorney. Because of the complexity of truck accidents, you need to seek legal help. An experienced Chicago truck accident lawyer can help. The attorney will ask you questions pertaining to the accident, help you determine what steps you need to take, and make sure that you understand your rights. Your attorney may also recommend the submission of a spoliation letter. This letter can preserve information found in the black box of a truck that may otherwise be overwritten within 30 days of the accident, as well as other important information. Destruction of this evidence could harm your accident claim.
  • Notify insurance carriers. Your lawyer will file an insurance claim shortly after your accident to provide a written notice of a claim.
  • Documenting your health. Oftentimes, victims of truck accidents think that after their initial medical care, it is no longer important to do anything to preserve information about their health. This is not accurate; you should create a written record of your day-to-day challenges with your health, including pain levels, the time you spend running back and forth to doctors and physical therapists, and any additional information that may substantiate your final truck accident claim.

Fault and Truck Accident Claims

Driver fatigue, improper maintenance, and poor training are some of the issues that may cause a truck accident. When you retain an experienced Chicago truck accident attorney, he or she may need to launch a thorough investigation to find out the root cause of your truck accident. The investigatory process can be complicated, as it may involve numerous entities, including the police, insurance company, trucking company, and the driver of the truck.

If there is a catastrophic injury or death, a thorough investigation of the accident scene, information obtained from trucking logs, and data found on the truck’s black box will all be reviewed and analyzed to establish the facts of the accident. Such evidence will help your truck accident lawyer determine if the accident is the fault of the driver, both the driver and his or her employer, or other third parties.

Working With a Truck Accident Lawyer

After the accident you should avoid speaking directly with the insurance company. Instead, you should direct all insurance representative inquiries to your legal representative. This is important because the insurance company may reach out to you and try to obtain a recorded statement or reach an early settlement. Keep in mind, the earlier the offer, the more likely the settlement will be a small amount meant to avoid paying a larger claim. Depending on what the driver of the truck was transporting, Illinois, as well as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), have strict requirements for truck driver liability policies.

One of the reasons that it is important to avoid speaking with the insurance adjuster is his or her training. Keep in mind, insurance adjusters do not work for victims of a truck accident. Their role is to ensure that insurance companies pay as little as possible toward any claims. The less paid in claims, the lower the trucker’s insurance rates stay, and the higher the profit of the insurance company. Keep in mind, if the insurance company asks you to sign any documents, avoid doing so because it may constitute a waiver of your rights to file a claim later in the process.

You need to focus on your physical recovery following a truck accident. You likely also have several questions pertaining to what rights you have, what steps you should consider taking, and how the claims process works. The best thing you can do for yourself is to make sure you contact an experienced truck accident attorney, and ensure the preservation of evidence that may prove vital during the claim process.


Abels & Annes, P.C.
100 N LaSalle St #1710
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 924-7575

How Long Do You Have to File a Claim for a Truck Accident?

Dave Abels Lawyer
Truck Accident Lawyer, Dave Abels

Big rigs, tractor-trailers, eighteen-wheelers, and commercial trucks go by many names. They are all large and cumbersome, and when your car is hit by one, the consequences may prove deadly.

Regardless of whether you have a sedan or an SUV, tractor-trailers weigh much more than your car. The sheer size and weight of those trucks can cause intense damage to other vehicles and serious injuries to passengers, even at slow speeds. At higher speeds on highways, the results of impacts with big rigs are often catastrophic.

If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident on Illinois roads, you will not want to delay your search for an experienced and skilled truck accident lawyer who has your best interests in mind. Choosing the right lawyer for your case can give your personal injury claim a leg up and make sure you don’t miss any important deadlines for filing your case.

Start Your Claim Quickly

In Illinois,you typically only have two years from the date of the accident to file lawsuit. Two years may seem like a long time, but life quickly gets in the way, especially when you consider the severity of your injuries.

Depending on the type of injury you have suffered, you could be in the hospital for extended periods, which also means you are out of work during those times. Your bills will quickly pile up, and you may have no way to pay them.

Financial stress should not be your focus following an accident. You should put all of your effort, energy, and focus into your physical and emotional recovery. By handing off the stress of a personal injury claim to your lawyer, that weight is lifted off your shoulders, giving you the best chance of making a full recovery from your truck accident injuries.

Not taking swift action may cause you to lose out. If you do not file your personal injury claim in time, a court may dismiss your case, and you may end up paying out of pocket for injuries that you did not cause. We have seen this happen, tragically, and do not want to see it happen to you.

Truck Accidents Cause Serious Injuries

Illinois roadways have over 300,000 accidents a year. Tractor-trailers were in 3.5 percent of those crashes but caused 9.6 percent of all fatal accidents. While not all truck accidents will cause death, the size and weight of commercial trucks often cause more serious injuries. These include:

  • Burns
  • Concussions and other traumatic brain injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Paralysis
  • Amputation

The aforementioned injuries play a massive impact on your enjoyment of life and your ability to return to the life you had before your accident. When you are the victim of a truck accident, your life may change in dramatic ways:

  • Temporarily or permanently out of work
  • Long hospital stays
  • Rehabilitation center stays
  • In-home medical care and assistance
  • Help with daily routines, like bathing and getting dressed

Truck accident injuries are serious and life-changing. It’s important to remember that you did not cause the accident, and thus you should bear none of the responsibility for the medical bills you face in your recovery. When you work with a trusted Illinois truck accident injury lawyer, you give yourself the best chance of making a complete recovery, getting back to the life you love, and maximizing your compensation.

Make Sure You Seek Compensation

Medical bills are expensive. When you face serious, life-altering injuries from a truck accident, your medical bills may prove astronomical. Nearly two-thirds of all United States bankruptcy filings result from medical bills.

Medical bills, however, are not the only exponential costs that you will face in the aftermath of an accident. You should also seek compensation for the following:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of life enjoyment
  • Past, present, and future medical bills
  • Rehabilitation costs

What many truck accident victims forget to include in their claims are future expenses. Many victims are excited to get a quick settlement offer from the at-fault truck driver’s insurance company. Unfortunately, this initial offer likely doesn’t account for future expenses, and thus often leads to victims paying out-of-pocket for their own medical expenses in the future.

When you work with a seasoned personal injury lawyer in Illinois, you gain access to years of experience investigating truck accidents and helping clients maximize their compensation. Part of this process begins with creating an accurate estimate of your future medical needs. When you suffer injuries from a truck accident, your injuries are likely severe and will require lots of medical attention. Such care is expensive, but when you work with us, we can help you understand your future medical expenses and how much they could cost.

If you take the first offer from the insurance company, you may miss out on recovering these additional expenses. The first offer from the insurance company is usually a low-ball settlement offer. Insurance companies know that you are out of work and concerned about the medical bills you see piling up on your kitchen table. Retaining a lawyer helps to make sure you don’t fall victim to insurance company tactics.

What’s more tragic is that if you sign the lowball settlement offer, you will likely waive your right to bring any future claims against the insurance company for your accident. This means you could end up paying out of pocket for costs associated with your recovery from an accident that you did not cause.

The best way to avoid this situation is to work with an Illinois personal injury lawyer whom you trust. Let your lawyer take control of the legal aspect of your claim, so you can focus on your physical recovery and getting back on your feet.

Don’t Delay Contacting a Lawyer

If you delay too long, your claim may suffer. Maximizing your financial recovery is key to your physical recovery. You have more than enough to worry about with your injuries and your recovery. Let go of the stress and worry about how to pay your bills, and let a truck accident lawyer deal with the legal complexities of your personal injury claim and work on maximizing your financial recovery.


Abels & Annes, P.C.
100 N LaSalle St #1710
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 924-7575

How Can a Truck Accident Lawyer Help You After a Serious Crash?

Dave Abels Lawyer
Truck Accident Lawyer, Dave Abels

It only takes a second for a truck driver to lose control of his tractor-trailer on a busy highway. When a large truck crashes into you, the results are devastating. If you experienced serious injuries due to a negligent truck driver, trucking company, or both, you deserve justice.

Depending on the circumstances of your accident, you should seek compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. To learn if a personal injury lawsuit is an option for you, contact a truck accident lawyer today.

Why Truck Accidents Happen

Truck drivers spend long hours on the road and away from family. The pressure to deliver their loads on time and to return to their families may result in drivers taking unnecessary—and dangerous—risks behind the wheel.

The following are just a few examples of how a truck accident can happen in a second, leaving victims with traumatic and life-changing injuries:

  • Drowsy driving – According to the National Sleep Foundation, 60 percent of Americans admit to driving while sleepy. Federally mandated hours-of-service limit the amount of hours truck drivers can drive. However, some truck drivers may experience trouble resting during breaks or have an undiagnosed sleeping disorder.
  • Driving under the influence (DUI) – The blood alcohol concentration (BAC) legal limit in Illinois for a driver with a commercial driver’s license (CDL) is 0.04 percent or higher. This is lower than the 0.08 legal limit for other drivers. As of January 1, 2020, recreational marijuana is now legal in Illinois; however, the drug remains on the federal list of Schedule I drugs and off-limits for truck drivers.
  • Aggressive driving– A truck driver who is in a hurry to reach his or her final destination on-schedule may purposely speed or tailgate other drivers. Aggressive driving can quickly escalate into road rage, leaving victims with serious injuries.

Other reasons for truck accidents involve truck maintenance issues. Failing to inspect tires, brakes, or properly maintain a truck is a deadly combination when combined with a negligent driver. A trucking company that fails to maintain its fleet or check driver records for prior traffic convictions is irresponsible and potentially liable for your injuries.

Discussing your case with a personal injury lawyer is your best option for pursuing justice. A personal injury lawyer can review the evidence, determine liability, and handle your claim so you can focus on your health and recovery.

Types of Truck Accidents

  • Rear-end crashes – A fully loaded truck, traveling at normal speed in good weather conditions, needs the length of two football fields to stop. Even if you see the truck approaching in your rearview mirror, there is typically no time to get out of its way.
  • Side underride crashes – Government statistics estimate that as many as 200 people die every year due to side underride crashes with tractor-trailer trucks. Safety groups are advocating for more attention and solutions to this dangerous problem.
  • Jackknife – When a truck accident causes a truck to jackknife, the truck and the trailer become out of sync. The result is an L or V shape of the tractor-trailer on the highway. Driving too fast for weather conditions and improper braking are among the leading causes of jackknife accidents.
  • Rollover accidents – A rollover accident is especially dangerous when it involves a tanker truck. If the truck is carrying flammable liquid, it can leave you with serious burns in addition to other injuries.

These are just a few examples of the types of truck accidents that can change your life within seconds. If you experienced serious harm due to a negligent truck driver, a personal injury lawyer will help determine your eligibility to pursue compensation.

Common Truck Accident Injuries

An out-of-control truck is no match for a passenger vehicle. No matter the type of accident, the injuries are often catastrophic and may include the following:

  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Broken bones
  • Burns
  • Internal injuries

Medical costs continue to rise, making the ongoing need for your care—or that of a loved one—expensive. When you experience life-changing injuries due to no fault of your own, you deserve quality medical care. While each case is different, filing a civil action against those responsible for your situation can possibly alleviate your financial stress.

Sadly, not all truck accident victims survive their injuries. If you lost a close loved one due to a negligent truck driver, you may want to consult with an attorney regarding a wrongful death claim. You may be eligible to seek compensation for final medical expenses, funeral costs, and more.

Wrongful death claims are complex and best left to a legal professional. You have enough to deal with during your time of immense grief. Let a personal injury lawyer experienced with truck accident cases handle your claim, so you can focus on your family.

How a Truck Accident Lawyer Can Help You

Insurance companies like to settle claims quickly and for the least amount of money possible. Representatives may offer you a settlement that seems like a large amount of money. The reality is that an initial settlement offer is most likely not enough to cover your future financial and medical needs.

Do not fall for the high-pressure tactics of big insurance companies, and don’t try to handle negotiations on your own. Insurance companies are too skilled at what they do to take on alone. Protect your best interests by not speaking with insurance company representatives and securing legal representation instead.

Act quickly due to the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is a law that limits the amount of time you have to file a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. Once you miss the deadline for filing your case, your opportunity for legal action is lost forever.

No one deserves to suffer physically, financially, and emotionally due to the careless actions of a truck driver, trucking company, or both. If you were seriously injured due to no fault of your own, give careful thought to contacting a truck accident lawyer. Securing legal representation not only protects your best interests, but it can also afford you peace of mind during this most difficult time.


Abels & Annes, P.C.
100 N LaSalle St #1710
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 924-7575

Tow Trucks Can Cause Serious Accidents

Dave Abels Lawyer
Truck Accident Lawyer, Dave Abels

Many people only think of tow trucks when their car has broken down. However, tow trucks can also cause accidents. And because of their size and weight, the accidents caused by tow trucks can be extremely harmful, resulting in serious bodily injury.

More than 4,000 people die each year in large truck accidents, including accidents with tow trucks. Tow trucks, like all trucks, have the potential to seriously injure you or a loved one if you find yourself in an accident with one.

Types of Tow Trucks

There are many types of tow trucks that you frequently see on Illinois roads. The most common types include:

  • Flatbed – These tow trucks have a flatbed that allows a car or other vehicle to be pulled up onto the flatbed by a hydraulic lift. These tow trucks don’t require any part of your vehicle to be in contact with the roadway.
  • Integrated – These are larger tow trucks used for towing buses or tractor trailers. Because they tow larger vehicles, integrated trucks are also larger than other tow trucks.
  • Hook and chain – These tow trucks aren’t frequently seen today because they can actually cause additional damage to a vehicle. Hook and chain tow trucks are mostly used for vehicles that are going straight to a junkyard.
  • Wheel lift – These trucks are what you probably think of when you think of a tow truck. Wheel lift trucks hook onto two wheels and pull the car behind.

There are other types of tow trucks, but these are what you see most often. Because these vehicles are lifting and towing other vehicles, they must be incredibly sturdy and heavy. If you are involved in an accident with a tow truck, you and your passengers may suffer serious injuries. The accidents and injuries that victims suffer are similar to other heavy truck accidents and can involve life-altering scenarios.

Tow Truck Accident Causes

Human error causes most accidents. In fact, 94 percent of all accidents on the road are a result of human error or humans taking risks behind the wheel. When you are injured because someone else acted negligently behind the wheel, it’s incredibly frustrating. Not only are you dealing with an unnecessary injury, one that could have easily been avoided, but now you have to mend yourself and deal with rehabilitation to make a full recovery.

Tow trucks are just like any other vehicle on the road and are not immune to negligent drivers. Common causes of tow truck accidents include:

  • Tow Trucks Can Cause Serious Accidents Abels and AnnesNot securing the load
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Running red lights
  • Speeding
  • Reckless driving
  • Failure to yield
  • Driving too quickly for the road conditions
  • Improper maintenance

All tow truck drivers must be properly trained, just like any other commercial vehicle. In fact, each tow truck driver must maintain a commercial driver’s license and pass regular physical exams. This shows that the driver is focused on his or her work and willing to make efforts to ensure everyone’s safety.

Tow trucks are unique commercial vehicles because they tow other vehicles. This requires additional training about not only how to safely secure the other vehicle, but also how to drive while towing a car. These areas are often the cause of accidents and are the result of improper training or maintenance.

Injuries Caused by Tow Truck Accidents

When you’re injured in a car accident, your first thought is likely to figure out how you will get better. Being the victim of a tow truck accident is no different. Your injuries might be even more severe, so your recovery time might be much longer.

The severity of injury you received could depend on many factors, including:

  • The size and weight of the tow truck
  • If the tow truck was carrying a load

Common injuries include:

As a victim of a tow truck accident, you’re probably most concerned about your injuries, and that’s understandable. Regardless of the severity of your injuries, you’re likely facing some time out of work and several visits to the doctor. All of this is frustrating and worrisome. That’s why a you need a trusted truck accident lawyer who can fight to protect your rights.

Damages to Seek

From the day you’re injured, your sole focus should be on your recovery. When you’re facing time out of work, you may wonder where the money will come from to pay your medical bills, some of which may be extremely high, depending on the type of injury you suffered. That’s where we come in.

When you work with us, we’ll fight hard to get you compensation for the following:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of companionship
  • Emotional distress
  • Medical bills
  • Rehabilitation costs

Many people vastly underestimate their medical costs. As a result, we’ve often seen victims of tow truck accidents settle with the insurance company for an amount that doesn’t cover all of their medical bills. It’s like adding insult to injury. When this happens, it forces the victim of the tow truck accident to pay out of pocket for injuries that they didn’t commit. The best way to avoid that scenario is to speak with a seasoned truck accident lawyer.

Picking the Right Truck Accident Lawyer

When choosing an attorney to represent you in your tow truck accident claim, you need someone with whom you feel comfortable speaking and someone you can trust to help you recover what you need to heal physically and emotionally. You have enough to deal with right after your accident, and you don’t need to deal with the legal complexities of a personal injury claim, too.


Abels & Annes, P.C.
100 N LaSalle St #1710
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 924-7575

Mechanical Truck Failure

Dave Abels Lawyer
Truck Accident Lawyer, Dave Abels

In one recent year, 11,011 crashes involved tractor-trailers on Illinois roadways. While no definitive breakdown explores the causes of these crashes, they account for more than 3 percent of all accidents in the state.

While a small number, these accidents still resulted in more than 2,000 injuries and more than 100 fatalities.

Mechanical Failures in Tractor Trailers

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Large Truck Crash Causation Study, released in 2005, 10 percent of all truck accidents are caused by some form of mechanical failure. Unfortunately, there is no report available that provides more current data.

What we do know, however, is the form that mechanical failures take, including:

  • Brake failures – The causes of brake failure are numerous, but certainly, failure to inspect brakes or improper inspection can contribute to brake failure. The distance required to stop a truck fully varies depending on the weight of the load that it is carrying. However, stopping rules apply to every tractor-trailer.
  • Steering failures – Many of us have experienced difficulty in maneuvering our cars when the power steering fails. Imagine trying to steer a vehicle that weighs more than four times (or more) what a car weighs.
  • Transmission failures – More than 25,000 trucks were recently recalled for transmission failures. Imagine if one of those drivers is unaware of this recall, and his or her transmission fails while traveling at high speed.
  • Tire failures – Truck tires fail for many many reasons, and when they do, a driver can easily lose control of the vehicle, or debris from a tire unraveling on the roadway may strike another vehicle.

These are not the only reasons for truck failure; however, they are among the most common. Anyone who has suffered an injury in an accident resulting from a mechanical truck failure can suffer serious injuries that may take weeks or months to recover from.

Responsibility for Truck Maintenance

All commercial drivers are required to perform an inspection before leaving on a trip. They are also required to keep a copy of the report inside the vehicle to demonstrate that this inspection has been completed before leaving. There are certain items that drivers must include in this inspection, including:

Mechanical Truck Failure Abels and Annes

  • Engine area
  • Test performance of brakes
  • Check for proper tire inflation and ensure the tires are in good condition
  • Check steering function
  • Verify that trailer couplings are properly attached
  • Verify that all lights and reflectors are working properly
  • Ensure vehicle is properly loaded

Even if the driver has performed the proper inspection, it may not prevent mechanical failure, particularly if the truck is not receiving the maintenance required to keep it in good working order.

Truck accidents caused by mechanical issues may not always be the responsibility of the truck driver, assuming he or she has properly performed all pre-trip inspections. In some cases, accidents may be the fault of an employer, a maintenance company responsible for the upkeep of the vehicle, or whoever is responsible for the overall maintenance of the truck.

Victim Injuries and Understanding Insurance Rules

Victims of a mechanical truck failure can suffer traumatic injuries. Victims may include drivers or passengers in another vehicle, pedestrians, children on bicycles, or motorcycle operators. Injuries, including traumatic brain injury, back and neck injuries, burns, and crushing injuries, can result in long-term pain and suffering, scarring, and other life-altering issues.

After a truck accident, it is imperative a victim seek medical attention, even if you don’t feel any immediate pain. You may be feeling fine, but chances are you are still suffering some form of shock, and it is necessary to ensure that you are not suffering from an internal injury that is being masked by the adrenaline that surges through your system following any type of roadway collision.

Every state requires drivers on the road to maintain some form of liability insurance. However, truck drivers must abide by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) guidelines for insurance for all types of commercial vehicles. Since Illinois is an at-fault state, any driver involved in an accident with a truck will likely be contacted by the truck owner’s insurance company following an accident.

Victims must use great caution when discussing the accident with an insurance adjuster and should refrain from discussing liability and injuries. Victims should seek guidance from an experienced truck accident attorney ASAP. In all cases, victims should simply refer questions about the accident or their injuries directly to their attorney.

What Compensation Victims May Collect

As a victim of a truck accident, it may take you weeks to recover from your injuries. During that time, you may have to see numerous doctors, take prescription medication for pain and antibiotics to avoid infection, and you may be unable to return to work immediately.

You may be eligible to collect compensation from the responsible parties for these financial setbacks, as well as compensation for damages to your vehicle, pain and suffering, permanent scarring, and any costs associated with rehabilitation therapy that may be necessary before you return to work. Should your injuries be serious enough to result in your needing long-term nursing care, or you are unable to ever return to work, you may also be entitled to compensation.

Before you decide how to proceed, you should discuss your case with an experienced truck accident attorney. When searching for an attorney, you should find someone who has a proven track record of success.

Victims of accidents resulting from mechanical truck failures have natural concerns about seeking legal help because they are concerned about the costs of hiring an attorney. That is why it is a good idea to take advantage of the ability to get a free consultation and discuss the details of your case with an experienced lawyer.

When you or a loved one is a victim of a truck accident, you need to make sure you get your questions answered. The best way to do this is to find a truck accident attorney and let him or her explain how the law deals with these types of cases.


Abels & Annes, P.C.
100 N LaSalle St #1710
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 924-7575

Accidents Happen When Truck Drivers Are Unqualified

Dave Abels Lawyer
Truck Accident Lawyer, Dave Abels

According to the American Trucking Association, the United States has about 3.5 million professional truck drivers. Any of these drivers have the potential to cause an accident. You or a loved one could be the unfortunate victim of such an accident, suffering serious injuries as a result.

Because commercial trucks are much larger and heavier than normal vehicles, these trucks usually cause more damage and more serious injuries. Many federal regulations govern the trucking industry, but not all drivers or companies follow the law. They sometimes cut corners, and such negligence could cause you to sustain injuries.

Dangers of Unqualified Drivers

Federal law places certain requirements on commercial truck drivers. This is done not to burden truck drivers or trucking companies but to keep everyone safe on the road. Based on these laws, any company who employs a commercial truck driver must ensure that:

  • The driver passes a physical exam before being hired and every two years thereafter.
  • The driver has the appropriate commercial driver’s license to operate the type of truck that he or she drives.
  • The driver passes drug and alcohol tests regularly.
  • The driver doesn’t have any red flags in his or her driving past.

Truck drivers who aren’t in good health are more prone to fall asleep behind the wheel or become dependent on prescription drugs to stay awake. Both of these situations impair driving abilities.

If a company doesn’t ensure that its drivers have the correct commercial driver’s license, then the driver might not know how to safely operate the vehicle. When a truck driver is too sleepy or becomes addicted to drugs, that further reduces his or her ability to operate the truck safely. All of these regulations are in place to keep everyone safe. Even with this, there are over 4,000 commercial truck accident deaths each year.

Accidents Caused by Unqualified Drivers

Accidents Happen When Truck Drivers Are Unqualified Abels and Annes LawAccidents caused by a negligent truck driver or a negligent trucking company can be serious. Accidents include:

  • Sideswipes
  • Rear-end collisions
  • Running a red light
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Speeding
  • Improperly-secured load
  • Improper maintenance
  • Negligent hiring

The last one can be a serious problem. The federal regulations outlined above are the responsibility of the company that employs the truck driver. Putting unqualified truck drivers on the road is extremely dangerous and places everyone else on the road at grave risk of injury.

If a trucking company doesn’t follow federal law, it is acting negligently. Even if a company performs all the necessary checks and uncovers some red flags, but still hires the driver, that company is negligent. At Abels & Annes, we want to hold any company acting negligently accountable.

Possible Injuries

Because of the size and weight of commercial trucks, injuries are often more severe than in a normal car accident. The force of the impact can cause life-altering injuries. Examples include:

  • Burns
  • Lacerations
  • Broken bones
  • Concussions
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Paralysis
  • Amputation
  • Death

It is rare to walk away unscathed from an accident with a commercial truck. Because of this, injured survivors will likely have extremely high medical bills. You may also find yourself out of work for at least a short time so that you can recover. During your recovery period, you may worry about how you are going to pay your bills.

That’s where we come in. Working with a trusted and qualified truck accident attorney is a great step to help you recover damages, like:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Lost wages
  • Medical bills
  • Rehabilitation costs

One item you might overlook is future medical bills. Shortly after your injury, it’s likely that the insurance company of the negligent driver or his or her employer will contact you and offer you a settlement. These parties know that you’re out of work, and they know you need to pay your bills. The problem with this offer is that it likely won’t cover your future expenses.

It may excite you when the insurance company offers you enough to cover every bill sitting on your kitchen table. Unfortunately, that could leave you in financial hardship down the road when you realize that a lowball settlement offer wasn’t enough to cover your future expenses.

Working with a truck accident lawyer will help you create an accurate estimate for your future medical costs and that you won’t settle for less than what you need. If the insurance company is unwilling to offer a reasonable settlement, make sure you hire a lawyer who is fully prepared to take your case all the way to trial.

How to Tell if a Driver Is Unqualified

It may be easy to tell if a truck driver caused the accident that resulted in your injuries. However, it won’t be as easy to determine whether the driver was unqualified. That’s where you need an experienced and skilled truck accident lawyer to help you by investigating the accident and filing a lawsuit, if needed. Discovery in litigation will help your attorney determine if the truck driver was unqualified and who is at fault for allowing him to take the wheel and cause your injuries.

Most attorneys will do all of this at no cost up front to you. You only pay your lawyer if you recover compensation. Your attorney may investigate your accident, review medical records, speak to experts, speak with witnesses to the accident, all to help you make a full and complete recovery. You have enough to worry about with your physical injuries. Letting your truck accident lawyer deal with the legal complexities allows you to focus on your recovery.

Work With a Trusted Automobile Accident Lawyer

Commercial trucking cases are complex and may require expert witnesses. Not all law firms have the resources to take on such a complicated and expensive case. A law firm with the knowledge, experience, and ability to handle truck accident claims can help you recover physically and financially from the injuries you suffered as a result of someone else’s negligence.


Abels & Annes, P.C.
100 N LaSalle St #1710
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 924-7575

Recovering Compensation After Tanker Truck Accidents

Tanker trucks carry a wide array of substances throughout the United States and Illinois. Tanker trucks can be tractor-trailers or straight trucks. In either case, they can cause massive property damage and injuries when a collision occurs. Their large size and increased weight create a larger force during impact that causes more severe injuries and a higher chance of death, especially when a crash happens at high speeds.

Tankers pose additional risk to those on the road because many carry hazardous materials, which can lead to dangerous explosions or toxic chemical exposure when a crash occurs. If such a truck accident injures you, consider talking to a truck accident lawyer about your right to recover compensation.

Below you can learn more about tanker trucks, the substances they haul, and characteristics that make them especially dangerous.

All About Tanker Trucks

Tanker trucks have cylinder-shaped trailers that serve as holding tanks for a variety of different substances. Many tanker trucks are tractor-trailer trucks, which means the cab and the tank are two separate pieces that connect on hinge mechanisms. Some tankers are also straight trucks, which means the tank connects directly to the back of the cab without a hinge. Most tanks are made of metals like aluminum or stainless steel.

Tanker trucks sometimes haul liquid gases like nitrogen, or dry items such as sand or grain. Yet, the vast majority of tanker trucks haul chemicals or food grade liquids. Tanker trucks can be pressurized, insulated, and/or refrigerated, depending on the type of cargo they haul. Septic trucks are also a type of tanker that transports raw sewage to treatment plants.

Tanker Trucks Haul a Wide Variety of Items

In the United States, the vast majority of tanker trucks haul diesel and gasoline to gas stations, including those in Illinois. Yet, drivers can find tankers hauling many other items. Some tankers carry food items, while others carry hazardous substances. In either case, drivers who share the road face the risk of injury if they get in an accident with a tanker.

Some examples of items that tankers transport besides gasoline include:

  • Ethanol
  • Oil and tar
  • Sand
  • Corrosive materials, such as acids
  • Paints and dyes
  • Herbicides and pesticides
  • Ores, isotopes, and other radioactive substances
  • Oxidizing chemicals like peroxides
  • Flour and grain
  • Liquid dairy products such as milk and cream
  • Alcohol, wine, and beer
  • Food oils such as olive, canola, and vegetable
  • Corn syrup

Why Are Tanker Truck Accidents so Dangerous?

All truck accidents are dangerous and typically cause more damage than the average motor vehicle accident, but tanker trucks have special characteristics that make them especially dangerous. These characteristics also contribute to hazardous elements of tanker truck accidents. Below you will find some of these specific elements:

Fires

Tanker trucks can carry flammable materials and pressurized food-grade trucks can ignite when a crash happens. Truck accidents that lead to fires can cause fatalities. Even when accident victims live through a fire, they may suffer severe to catastrophic burns that require months of recovery and one or more reconstructive surgeries with skin grafts.

Explosions

Tanker truck collisions that occur at high speeds with a high force upon impact can throw a spark, which can cause flammable liquids and combustible cargo to explode. Accident victims who don’t lose their life can suffer excruciatingly painful burns as well as other major injuries. Explosions can also leave a victim with shrapnel in the body. Tanker truck accident victims who suffer injuries in an explosion likely will have one or more permanent scars on their bodies.

Load Spills

Trucking companies and manufacturers who send out tanker trucks have a legal requirement to maintain their trucks, keep them roadworthy, and properly secure all cargo. This includes regular inspections and closing the tank after loading. When companies don’t properly maintain or load their tank trucks or the tank has defective parts, some or all of the load can leak or spill all over the road. Those who share the road with the truck risk exposure to dangerous substances if the truck is carrying hazardous materials. At the very least, nearby motorists might lose control of their vehicle when load spillage occurs.

Sloshing

A tanker truck’s load decreases with each delivery it makes. Tankers who aren’t fully loaded can cause traffic accidents because of the sloshing movement that occurs inside the tank. Careless or inexperienced drivers can take corners to fast or make other sudden movements. This causes the cargo to shift, changing the center of gravity in the tank. Tanker truck drivers have difficulty controlling their truck when sloshing occurs, which can potentially lead to dangerous or fatal accidents.

Rollovers

Tanker trucks aren’t necessarily more top heavy than a typical semi-truck, but the movement of their cargo makes them more prone to rollover accidents when drivers lose control. Many truck accidents, including those in tanker trucks, result in injuries for drivers and occupants in other vehicles, but the truck driver walks away unscathed because he is protected by the cab. Rollover accidents are the exception to this rule. Not only are other motorists likely to suffer injuries if a tanker rolls over in their vicinity, but the truck driver is likely to sustain injuries too.

Injuries From Tanker Truck Accidents

Drivers and occupants involved in tanker truck accidents might experience one or more severe or catastrophic injuries, such as:

  • Head trauma and brain injuries
  • Neck injuries including whiplash and fractured cervical vertebrae
  • Painful back injuries such as slipped discs and broken or herniated vertebrae
  • Multiple fractures and crushed bones
  • Internal organ damage and internal bleeding
  • Spinal cord injuries that can cause full or partial paralysis
  • Crushed limbs that need to be amputated when doctors cannot restore blood flow
  • Severe to catastrophic burns leaving scars even after skin grafting and corrective surgery
  • Lung damage from smoke inhalation or exposure to toxic chemicals or fumes
  • Chemical burns, radiation exposure, and other damage from hazardous material.

If you suffered injuries in a tanker truck accident, it’s in your best interest to contact a truck accident attorney as soon as possible to determine your eligibility for compensation and the best course of action for your circumstances.

T-Bone Truck Accidents

According to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), more than 120,000 truck accidents occur each year on Illinois roads and highways. Among these accidents were several thousand T-bone truck accidents. T-bone accidents, sometimes referred to as angle accidents, occur when one vehicle strikes the side of another vehicle and makes a right angle. T-bone truck accidents that occur on the passenger side of a vehicle are also referred to as broadside collisions and most often occur at intersections.

Generally, truck accidents result in more damage and injury than typical car accidents, and they are more likely to result in death. T-bone accidents are among the most dangerous of all traffic accidents because the point of impact is typically the door of a vehicle, giving little protection to those on the other side.

This makes T-bone truck accidents potentially treacherous. This guide provides a deeper look into T-bone truck accidents, including why they occur most frequently at intersections and driver-related causes of T-bone truck accidents. We hope this information helps you avoid falling victim to a T-bone truck accident. If you have already suffered injuries in a broadside collision with a truck, a truck accident lawyer can give you more information about how to proceed.

T-Bone Truck Accidents Mostly Occur at Intersections

Intersections remain the most common location for T-bone accidents, including those involving trucks, because cars and trucks cross paths most often in them. Intersections have specific characteristics and conditions that make them more dangerous for motorists than other places on roads and highways. They include:

Planned Points of Conflict

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has devoted ample time and resources to study intersections, so they can learn how to reduce injuries and fatalities. The FHWA refers to intersections as “planned points of conflict,” which are home to 20 percent of traffic fatalities and approximately 40 percent of accident-related injuries. T-bone accidents account for almost 50 percent of all crashes at intersections.

Human Error

Drivers most often introduce danger into intersections. Careless and negligent drivers make intersections dangerous for others on the road, especially when they are crowded. Engineers who study road construction must also study human error. Even safe drivers make mistakes. Drivers must receive information and process it quickly to drive safely behind the wheel. The human brain can only process one piece of information at a time, and intersections have massive amounts of information for drivers to absorb. If drivers don’t process the information quickly and in the right order, T-bone accidents can occur more frequently.

Lack of Traffic Control Devices

Intersections in Illinois’s biggest city, Chicago, have a wide array of traffic control devices. Human error might play a part in a T-bone accident to the extent that a driver doesn’t see or correctly process the instructions from stop signs, stop lights, and crosswalks. Sometimes faulty traffic control devices can cause accidents. Engineers may make careful decisions about traffic control features, but sometimes they are wrong.

Left-Hand Turns

Intersections provide trucks and other motorists the ability to make left-hand turns, which require crossing one or more lanes of oncoming traffic. Even smaller intersections that include private driveways and parking lots can be the site of T-bone truck accident, when drivers have to make a left-hand turn across traffic. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than half of all T-bone accidents are a result of unsafe left-hand turns.

Negligent Truck Drivers Cause T-Bone Truck Accidents

Many different scenarios can increase the risk for a T-bone truck accident such as mechanical failure, poor weather conditions, poor road conditions, and driver behaviors. You have no control over the weather and road conditions, nor do truck drivers. Yet, truck drivers do have control over the choices they make behind the wheel. Careless truckers who make poor choices increase the likelihood of a T-bone truck accident. Examples include:

Distracted Driving

Federal law prohibits truckers from using their cell phones while driving, unless they use a headset or hands-free function on their phone. Yet, some truckers get distracted by cell phone use. Unfortunately, cell phones are not the only distractions truckers face that can cause a T-bone truck accident.

Other examples include adjusting the radio, adjusting climate control features, programming a GPS, eating, drinking, reaching for something on the floor, daydreaming, or watching an event outside of the truck. Drivers who take their eyes off the road, hands off the wheel, or mind off of driving put others at risk for injury from a T-bone truck accident.

Drunk or Drugged Driving

Controlled substances impair truckers, making them more likely to cause a crash. Symptoms that impaired drivers experience include:

  • Slower reaction times to information, especially at intersections
  • Struggles with short-term memory
  • Reduced hand-eye coordination, making it more difficult to steer a big rig
  • Reduced concentration, making it difficult to process information
  • Reduced judgment of time and distance, making it difficult to respond appropriately to stoplights, stop signs, and other devices

Drowsy Driving

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has found that truck drivers who don’t sleep for 18 hours have the same level of impairment of drivers who have a 0.08 breath alcohol content. Like those who are drunk or have used drugs, drowsy truck drivers cannot process all the information they receive at an intersection. This makes driver fatigue a common risk factor for T-bone truck accidents.

Truck drivers who don’t get enough rest can suffer the following symptoms:

  • Slower reaction time for processing information
  • Overall slower brain function
  • Difficulty with judgment
  • Impaired vision
  • Overall reduction in driving ability
  • Possible nodding off or falling asleep while driving

Speeding

Truck drivers have notoriously long days and demanding schedules, which can cause them to be in a rush. Trucks already need more distance to stop, slow down, and maneuver because of their extra weight, but speeding increases that need. Truckers who speed cannot control their truck as easily, and can struggle to react appropriately at intersections. This also increases the likelihood of a T-bone truck accident.

If you have suffered injuries in a T-bone truck accident, a skilled truck accident lawyer can discuss your accident and injuries, help you understand your rights to recovery, and devise a plan for the best path forward.

Tractor-Trailer Accidents and How They Can Injure You

We drive by tractor-trailers every day. They are on our highways, our side streets, and in retail store parking lots. Indeed, we’re surrounded by them so often that we almost take them for granted. Recent numbers suggest that tractor-trailers transport approximately 68 percent of all goods in the United States. But while we depend on tractor-trailers to deliver the products we want and need, these vehicles can pose a danger to other drivers on the road. A car is no match in an accident with a large truck, and as such, these accidents very often result in serious injuries or fatalities. If you or a loved one is suffering after a severe accident with a tractor trailer, read on to learn you next steps or you can speak with one of the truck accident attorneys at Abels and Annes today.

What Are Tractor-Trailers?

You may hear the term tractor-trailer tossed around a lot, but what exactly is a tractor-trailer? The term tractor-trailer does not encompass all large trucks on the road. For example, a box truck is not a tractor-trailer, nor is a dump truck. So what defines a tractor-trailer? Let’s look at the anatomy of the typical truck on the road.

Tractor-Trailer Accidents and How They Can Injure You
big white truck on the road in a rural landscape at sunlight. perfect sky. over the aspfalt road at sunset. logistics transportation and cargo freight transport industrial business commercial concept.

The front part of the truck is called the semi-truck. Semi means “half.” The tractor-trailer is the long, metal storage compartment that attaches to the back of the semi. While semi-truck and tractor-trailer both refer to separate parts of the truck, the two terms are often used interchangeably to describe the semi and the tractor-trailer as a whole. A fully loaded tractor-trailer can weigh up to 80,000 pounds and extended from 70 to 80 feet long (truck plus cab).

In 2016, there were 2.8 million semi-trucks registered in the United States. It should also be known that these trucks drove a combined 175 billion miles across the country. The latest census numbers show that over 3.5 million people work as truck drivers. While many drivers work for independent trucking companies or large corporations, some drivers are self-employed. Over half of all self-employed and employer-owned trucking businesses are classified as long-distance haulers.

The Dangers That Exist With Tractor-Trailers

Just look at a tractor-trailer parked next to the standard mid-size car, and you can immediately see where the inherent danger lies. However, the dangers extend far beyond the sheer size of these vehicles. The design, mechanics, and even the drivers can all add additional risk. Take a look at a few facts that illustrate the dangers of tractor-trailers:

  • A fully loaded tractor-trailer traveling at 65 miles per hour takes the length of two football fields to stop. To put that in perspective, that is 65 percent farther than it takes for a mid-size car traveling the same speed to stop.
  • In 2017, the year in which the most recent numbers are available, 4,889 large trucks were involved in fatal accidents nationwide.
  • In Illinois, tractor-trailers played a role in 3.5 percent of crashes overall, but nearly 10 percent of all fatal accidents, in 2017.
  • Semi-truck drivers have blind spots all around them. In the front, the blind spot extends 20 feet in front of the cab. At the rear, the blind spot goes back 30 feet. On each side, the driver has a limited view of the adjacent lanes. As a rule of thumb, if you can’t see the truck’s side mirrors, the driver can’t see you.

Common Causes of Tractor-Trailer Accidents

Driving a tractor-trailer takes skill and training. Not just anyone can drive a large truck. Truck drivers know the responsibility that comes with driving these vehicles, and most give the job the care and attention that it deserves. So why do so many accidents continue to happen?

  • Speeding: Truck drivers speed for a variety of reasons. They may be behind schedule, tired, or unfamiliar with the area. Regardless of the reason, speeding is dangerous, especially when it comes to large trucks. Speeding increases the amount of time it takes to stop and reduces the amount of time available to react. This combination can be deadly if a vehicle or other hazard enters the truck’s path.
  • Distracted driving: Truckers work long hours, often spending days away from home. Some drivers may turn to their mobile devices to ease the boredom or loneliness. The time it takes to do something as simple as changing the station on a music app is enough to cause the truck to drift into another lane, miss a car move in front of them, or slide into a blind spot.
  • Mechanical issues: The law requires drivers to inspect their vehicles before each shift. In addition, they must undergo annual inspections. Sometimes, important flaws are missed, and other times, the inspection gets skipped altogether. Even if the driver complies with all inspections, improper maintenance can still cause an accident.

Determining Liability

Gary Annes Lawyer
Truck Accident Attorney

Tractor-trailer accidents can cause serious injuries. The cost of these injuries can easily enter hundreds of thousands of dollars. So who bears the responsibility of these costs? The goal of a personal injury claim is to make sure that it’s not you. The law requires all drivers to carry accident insurance. The amount of this coverage depends on the size of the truck and what the truck is carrying. There are circumstances where this coverage may not be enough or where other parties may hold liability. A thorough investigation can determine all potentially liable parties. This may include:

  • The driver: Drivers have a responsibility to maintain their truck and to practice safe driving habits. When they fail to uphold this responsibility, their insurance companies may be responsible for covering damages.
  • The driver’s employer: The employer is usually the person that owns the truck and hired the driver. If the employer did not ensure that the vehicle was safe, provided inadequate training, pushed the driver to work beyond the legal limits, or knowingly put an unsafe driver on the road, the employer may hold liability.  The owner would also typically be liable for damages under an agency theory.

If you were in an accident involving a tractor-trailer, you have avenues for compensation available to you. The law allows victims to file personal injury claims to recover costs from negligent parties. If you need more information regarding a recent accident, contact an experienced truck accident attorney today.


Abels & Annes, P.C.
100 N LaSalle St #1710
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 924-7575