Each year thousands of motorists are critically injured when passenger vehicles and commercial trucks collide. As the numbers of commercial trucks on the road steadily increase every year, inevitably so will the number of serious accidents. A collision with a large truck can be devastating for the driver and any passengers in the car. The truck's sheer size and power leave the car’s passengers at risk for serious personal injuries or even death.
In 2008, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported 144 fatal crashes with large trucks in Illinois. Federal and state codes, designed specifically to protect motorists from the negligence of untrained commercial truck drivers and trucking companies, regulate the safe operation of large trucks. At Ridge & Downes we are familiar with those laws and regulations and can provide well informed advice to you or any of your loved ones who have been involved in a trucking accident in Illinois.
Trucking accidents can happen for a variety of reasons, which vary from relatively simple errors, such as excessive speed, driver fatigue or inexperienced driving, to more complicated and serious reasons, which include, ignoring regulations that require companies to limit the number of hours their drivers are on the road, carrying excessive or unsafe loads and drug or alcohol use on the part of the driver.
In addition, the list of possible defendants in a trucking accident goes beyond just the driver of the truck. The company that owns the truck can also be held liable, as can the owner of the load, the owner of the trailer carrying the load, the truck manufacturer, the tire distributor, or others, depending on the cause and circumstances of the accident.
The law limits the time you have to pursue a legal action against a negligent party so it is important to obtain sound legal advice as soon as possible. More importantly, it is imperative to obtain quick access to the evidence and witnesses surrounding a trucking accident, as this will often be a crucial factor in winning a case. In addition, trucking companies and their insurance carriers will have investigators in place within hours of an accident occurring.
At Ridge & Downes we have the knowledge, expertise and resources to handle any question you may have surrounding this important area of personal injury law so please do not hesitate to call us if you have further questions about this area of the law.
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