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When is a Trucking Company Liable For Injuries in Illinois?

Posted on in Truck Accidents

Winnebago County Personal Injury LawyerAccidents involving large commercial trucks often result in severe or fatal injuries, usually to people other than the truck driver. In Illinois, nearly 100 people were killed and more than 300 were catastrophically injured by semi-trucks in 2019. In these cases, injury victims and their families need all the help they can get to recover from their substantial losses. Fortunately, it is often possible to pursue compensation from a trucking company in addition to the individual who was operating the truck.

Trucking Companies Are Subject to Federal Regulations

Trucking companies throughout the United States are governed by safety regulations maintained by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Some regulations that often come into play in personal injury cases include:

  • Hours of service - Trucking companies must monitor and limit the hours of service for their drivers on a daily and weekly basis, often managed through regularly updated driving logs. Drivers who exceed their allowed hours of service are at risk of fatigue, which can impair their driving abilities.

  • Cargo securement - Truck cargo must be distributed safely across the vehicle’s axles and properly secured to avoid shifting while the truck is in motion. Unbalanced or shifting cargo can cause a truck to overturn.

  • Inspection, repair, and maintenance - Trucking companies are required to regularly inspect their fleet of vehicles to ensure they are safe for operation, and to record and address any defects or necessary repairs before a truck is allowed on the road.

  • Drug and alcohol testing - Trucking companies must test their drivers during the hiring process, randomly throughout the year, and as necessary in other circumstances, so as to reduce the risk of impaired drivers.

Trucking companies may also be held responsible for other forms of negligence, such as allowing a driver to operate on a suspended license or without the proper safety training.

Filing a Claim Against a Trucking Company

Holding a trucking company accountable for your injuries often requires unique types of evidence when compared to a claim against an individual driver. You will not only need to establish the cause of the accident, but also find evidence that the company’s actions or lack thereof contributed to the crash. An attorney can help ensure that a trucking company preserves relevant evidence, and can then utilize that evidence to support your claim.

Contact a Rockford, IL Truck Accident Lawyer

At Mannarino & Brasfield, a Division of KJS, our attorneys have the experience you need to manage a claim against a trucking company and put pressure on them in settlement negotiations, giving you a better chance of recovering full compensation. Call us today at 815-215-7561 for a free consultation with our Winnebago County personal injury lawyers.

 

Sources:

https://idot.illinois.gov/Assets/uploads/files/Transportation-System/Resources/Safety/Crash-Reports/crash-facts/2019%20Crash%20Facts.pdf

https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations

 

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