Posted On: March 29, 2010

11 Killed in Tractor-Trailer Accident Involving 15-Passenger Van

A devastating semi-truck crash has claimed the lives of 11 people—9 of them from the same family. The tractor-trailer accident occurred early Friday when the truck drove across a median on Interstate 65 and struck the van in a head-on collision.

Killed in the Kentucky truck accident, now being called the state’s deadliest traffic collision in two decades, were tractor-trailer driver Ken Laymon and (in the van) Mennonite minister John Eshe, his wife Sadie, their daughters Anna, Rose, and Rachel, their son Leroy, daughter-in-law (and Leroy's wife) Naomi, 2-month-old grandson Jalen, Rachel’s fiancé Joel Gingrich, and family friend Ashley Kramer.

Two grandchildren, ages 3 and 5, survived the car wreck. However, their parents were among those that died. Jalen was their brother.

State police say that Laymon lost control of the semi-truck, which at the time was fully loaded with brake-drums for other tractor-trailers. Because the truck was so heavy, the cable barriers that divided the lanes did nothing to prevent the semi-truck from crossing over them and into oncoming traffic.

State officials claim that while its cable barriers exceed the federal guidelines when it comes to safety and strength, they are not designed to stop tractor-trailers. Last November, a cable barrier also failed during another tractor-trailer accident. Fortunately, no one has died.

National Transportation Safety Board investigators plan to determine whether Friday’s catastrophic traffic accident was an isolated incident or if there is a bigger issue related to the barriers that needs to be tackled. They also plan to interview Laymon’s family to determine what state of mind the trucker might have been in leading up to the truck accident. Laymon’s work schedule, any potential distractions he might have been dealing with, and the condition of the truck will be examined.

The NTSB only probes about 10 traffic crashes each year.

Chicago, Illinois Semi-Truck Accidents
Too many lives are lost in truck crashes every year. To ensure the best outcome for your Illinois truck accident case in Cook County, Lake County, DuPage County, and Will County you should retain the services of an experienced Chicago tractor-trailer accident lawyer.

NTSB To Interview Family Of Driver In I-65 Crash,, March 29, 2010

11 killed in Kentucky wreck, CNN, March 26, 2010

Related Web Resources:
National Transportation Safety Board

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

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Posted On: March 26, 2010

Chicago Truck Accident: Four People Injured When Two Semis and a Car Crash on Dan Ryan Expressway

Four people were hurt on Monday night during a Chicago truck crash on the Dan Ryan Expressway. The multi-vehicle collision happened on the South Side at around 10:40 pm when a semi-truck rear ended a car as traffic was slowing. Another semi-truck then hit the first truck before catching fire.

Three men and one woman sustained injuries—two of them were in serious-to-critical condition when they were transported to local hospitals. The driver of the second semi-truck received a citation for following too close.

Chicago, Illinois Truck Accident
The drivers of 18-wheeler trucks, semi-trucks, and other large trucks are operating heavy vehicles that often are carrying up to 80,000 pounds of cargo. Truckers have a responsibility to exercise caution on the roads so that they don’t cause serious injury to motorists or pedestrians.

Not just anyone can safely drive a large truck. Professional truck drivers must be properly licensed and trained. Meantime, trucking companies must make sure that they hire good drivers and that the truckers have the equipment and vehicles that they need to drive safely. Defect-free trucks and proper truck maintenance are essential if a truck driver is to operate a vehicle safely. Truckers must also follow the hours-of-service rule, which means that a truck driver should never exceed the number of hours that he/she is allowed to be on the road and must get the proper rest in between shifts so that fatigue or drowsiness doesn’t cause the driver to accidentally crash a truck, as well as other federal and state regulations.

Semi burns, 4 hurt in 3-vehicle crash on the Dan Ryan, Chicago-Sun Times, March 23, 2010

Semi-tractors collide on Ryan, WGN, March 23, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance

Chicago Department of Transportation

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Posted On: March 22, 2010

Chicago 18-Wheeler Truck Accident Kills 6-Year-Old Pedestrian While Seriously Injuring the Boy's Father

A tragic Chicago semi-truck crash on March 19 has claimed the life of a 6-year-old boy, while seriously injuring his father. Kevin Vasquez and his dad Antonio were crossing the road at Ashland at 18th Place when a semi-trailer truck driven by Jack Hunt struck them. The two Pilsen pedestrians sustained critical injuries and were transported to John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital where Kevin was later pronounced dead.

Kevin’s father Antonio was walking the boy home from school when the catastrophic Cook County truck collision happened. According to witnesses, Kevin, who was motionless on the road, was bleeding from the head while his father, who was under the truck, screamed in pain.

Hunt received a citation for striking a pedestrian in the street. No additional charges are expected.

There were no traffic lights, stop signs, crossing guards, or a crosswalk at the junction where the Chicago truck accident occurred. Residents have expressed concern that these safety elements have yet to be installed at an intersection that kids frequently cross.

Chicago, Illinois 18-Wheeler Truck Accident
It is important that you speak to a Chicago truck crash lawyer as soon as possible. There is so much to consider when proving liability, and you do not want to go up against a trucking company that is experienced in limiting liability without legal help. Also, there may be more than one party that should be held liable for your injuries, pain and suffering, medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, and/or the loss of someone you love.

No stoplight, sign or crosswalk at fatal Pilsen intersection, Chicago Tribune, March 21, 2010

Semi strikes, kills boy en route from school, Chicago Sun-Times, March 20, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

Truck Safety Coalition

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Posted On: March 19, 2010

Illinois Truck Accident Lawsuit Claims Trucker Struck Plaintiff while Trying to Switch Lanes

Marjorie Workman is suing trucker Constance Lynne Fortnam and Constance Lynne Fortnam for her Illinois truck accident injuries. Workman claims that Fortnam, who was driving a 2006 Freightliner Model Columbia, struck her vehicle on Interstate 55/70 on April 1, 2008. She says that she and Fortnam collided when the trucker unsuccessfully tried to change lanes.

Workman is seeking over $100,000 plus costs. She says that Fortnam neglected to properly control her vehicle, failed to see the plaintiff’s auto, failed to only merge when safe, did not drive at the right speed, and failed to lower her speed to prevent a truck collision.

The plaintiff also contends that as a result of her Illinois truck crash injuries, she became sore, sick, disordered, lame, disabled, sustained leg, neck, and back injuries, suffered internal injuries, and experienced great anguish and pain. Workman now has medical bills because of these injuries.

Merging Lanes
When merging into another lane, it is important that a driver make sure that the lane is clear so that his/her vehicle doesn't accidentally sideswipe another car. The motorist also must make sure that there isn’t another vehicle that is rapidly approaching or merging from the lane on the other side. Activating your turn signal and, when necessary, adjusting the speed of the vehicle to go with the flow of traffic are also important. Of course, the driver should also make sure that he or she is paying attention, alert, and obeying the traffic laws and signs.

Too many motor vehicle crashes occur because a motorist was careless or reckless when merging from one lane to the other.

Truck switched lanes causing collision, suit claims, The Record, March 18, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Large Trucks, Insurance Institute Highway Safety

Fatality Analysis Reporting System

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Posted On: March 17, 2010

Cook County, Illinois Truck Accident Victim Awarded $10 million

A 52-year-old Tinley Park man was awarded $10 million for his Cook County semi-truck accident injuries. Bruce McIntosh sustained herniated discs in his neck and back when a large truck struck his auto in September 2008.

The catastrophic Cook County tractor-trailer accident happened when the driver of the large truck did not stop at a stop sign, broadsiding McIntosh’s vehicle. The plaintiffs of the Cook County, Illinois truck accident complaint are the trucker and Rehmat Trucking Inc.

Herniated Discs
A herniated disc usually involves a fragment of the disc nucleus that has slipped into the spinal canal through a rupture or tear. They can happen in any area of the spine. Symptoms depend on where the disc is located and the size of herniation. While most herniated discs don’t require surgery, there are people whose symptoms are so severe that they may experience severe pain and even become incapacitated unless treatment is administered. Spinal surgery, which may involve a laminectomy, discectomy, laminotomy, or spinal fusion, may even be warranted if the patient experiences:

• Pain that impairs normal activity
• Neurological problems, such as numbness or weakness
• Loss of normal bladder or bowel functions
• Problems walking or standing

Following the procedure, rehabilitation, physical therapy, pain medications, and more time off work might be required to recover.

Chicago, Illinois truck crashes can cause victims to sustain traumatic brain injuries, back injuries, spinal cord injuries, neck injuries, head injuries, back injuries, and other serious injuries. In many cases, truck crash victims cannot afford to cover the costs of medical expenses and rehabilitation without help. This is one reason to hold negligent trucking companies and any other parties that are responsible for your Chicago personal injuries liable.

Tinley Park man awarded $10 million after crash, Chicago Sun-Times, March 12, 2010

Herniated Disc, Neurosurgery Today

Related Web Resources:
Herniated Disc, Mayo Clinic

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Posted On: March 12, 2010

Tractor-Trailer Crash Injures Senator Harry Reid’s Wife and Daughter

The wife and daughter of US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid were injured in a multi-vehicle crash involving a tractor-trailer on Thursday afternoon. 69-year-old Landra Reid underwent neck surgery the following day. She broke her nose, neck, and a vertebra during the rear-end tractor-trailer collision on Interstate 95. Reid’s daughter, Lana Reid Barringer, also injured her neck, as well as suffered facial lacerations.

The four-vehicle crash happened during stop-and-go-traffic. The tractor-trailer struck the Reids’ Honda Odyssey, which then rear-ended a 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee that then hit a 2007 Chevrolet Cobalt. The drivers of the Chevrolet and Jeep were also taken to hospitals. Fortunately, their injuries do not appear to be life threatening.

Police charged trucker Allan W. Snader with reckless driving.

Rear-End Crashes involving Tractor-Trailers
Rear-end collisions can lead to different kinds of injuries, including neck injuries, back injuries, spinal cord injuries, head injuries, knee injuries, ankle injuries, soft tissues injuries, carpal tunnel injuries, and death. Imagine the force of impact of having a large truck weighing up to 80,000 pounds rear-ending another vehicle.

Truck drivers are responsible for safely transporting their loads to and from their destinations while making sure that they don’t accidentally strike anyone. They can be sued for personal injury or wrongful death if failure to uphold this responsibility causes injury or death.

Common Causes of Rear-End Truck Crashes:
• Distracted driving
• Exhaustion
• Drowsy driving
• Poor training
• Brake problems
• Following too closely

Reid's wife undergoes neck surgery after wreck, CNN, March 12, 2010

Harry Reid's wife, daughter injured in car accident, Newsday, March 11, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Senator Harry Reid

Rear-end Large Truck Crashes, FMCSA

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Posted On: March 9, 2010

Chicago Semi-Truck Crash on South Side Involves CTA Bus and Minivan

A Chicago truck accident involving a CTA bus and minivan has left five people injured. The Cook County semi-truck crash happened on Sunday afternoon in the Pilsen neighborhood when the truck rear-ended the No. 60 Blue Island/26th bus that then collided with the van.

The Chicago bus accident occurred at South Loomis Street and West Cermack Road. Five bus passengers were transported to a local hospital. One woman was in critical condition, while the other four were admitted to hospitals in fair condition.

Our Chicago, Illinois truck accident lawyers cannot remind truck drivers enough to be careful when navigating their large vehicles through the city’s roads. In most truck crashes involving at least two vehicles, it is usually the occupants of the other vehicles that will have sustained the serious injuries.

Just last Friday, a motorist was injured when his car collided with a semi-truck on I-94 close to South Holland. The car driver, who was trapped In the vehicle, had to be rescued. He sustained non-life threatening injuries.

Please contact our Chicago truck crash lawyers to consult about your accident. Many trucking companies have a team in place to fight any allegations of negligence by other motorists. They may even try to get you to settle before you’ve even had a chance to consider that you actually do have legal options.

Lanes Re-Open After Bishop Ford Wreck, Fox Chicago News, March 5, 2010

CTA bus rear-ended by semi, hits minivan on South Side, Chicago Sun-Times, March 7, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Chicago Transit Authority

Truck Safety Coalition

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Posted On: March 5, 2010

$5 Million Truck Accident Lawsuit Blames Trucker for Bicyclist’s Wrongful Death

Six months after John R. “Jack” Yates was fatally struck by a large truck, his family is seeking $5 million in wrongful death damages. The 67-year-old bicyclist died after he got caught in the large truck’s back wheels. Yates was then run over.

According to the family’s truck accident complaint, trucker Michael Dale Chandler and his employer Potts & Callahan Inc. were negligent in causing Yates’s death. Surveillance footage shows the trucker turning right without activating his turn signal.

Even though investigators say that the bicyclist was at fault because he was biking in parking lanes and attempted to pass the truck from the right, the family’s truck accident lawyer maintains that the victim did nothing wrong because state law lets a cyclist stay as far to the right as possible and with the traffic’s flow.

Chandler did not stop his truck following the grisly truck accident. However, investigators say they don’t think that the trucker knew that he had struck Yates.

Getting caught under the wheels of any vehicle—especially a large truck, can be catastrophic for the pedestrian or bicyclist involved. Imagine the weight of thousands of pounds moving over your body. It is no surprise when a victim does not survive getting run over by a tractor-trailer, an 18-wheeler truck, a semi-truck, a garbage truck, or any other kind of large truck.

Although nothing can make up for pain and suffering of the victim, as well as the family’s grief, you may be able to get the negligent party to financially compensate you, which can help offset medical expenses, funeral or cremation costs, lost income, and other losses.

Family of bicyclist killed in city accident files $5 million lawsuit, The Baltimore Sun, March 5, 2010

Lawsuit Filed In Hit-And-Run That Killed Cyclist, WJZ, March 4, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Bicycle Crash Facts,

National Crash Facts, FMCSA

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Posted On: March 3, 2010

Our Chicago, Illinois Truck Accident Lawyers Want to Caution Truckers Not to Watch Porn or Any Other Programs While Driving

Police claim that big rig trucker Thomas Wallace was watching porn on his laptop when he fatally hit a disabled vehicle on the road. The truck crash killed Julie Stratton, the vehicle’s 33-year-old driver.

Wallace has been arrested and charged with second-degree manslaughter. Investigators claim that the truck driver disregarded federal trucking regulations when he didn’t get more than fours sleep before the truck collision happened.

Distracted Driving
While distracted driving is a dangerous habit for any driver to engage, it can lead to especially catastrophic consequences when the offending motorist is a large truck driver. Large trucks generally weigh thousands of pounds and a collision with one of these vehicles can prove catastrophic. This is why truckers must stay focused on what they are doing. They cannot afford to talk on the cell phone, text message, watch TV, surf the Web, send and receive emails, or do anything that removes even just a small amount of focus from the road and the vehicles and pedestrians around them. Distracted driving can be grounds for a Chicago, Illinois truck accident lawsuit if this negligent driving habit contributed to causing a collision.

It is so important that truckers are well-rested before they start their driving shift that the federal government has regulations in place to make sure they have time to get enough sleep and recuperate from their long shifts. Truck drivers are also only allowed to drive for a certain number of hours at a time.

Unfortunately, there continue to be many exhausted, drowsy, and distracted truckers on the road. Having a sleeping truck driver behind the steering wheel of a tractor-trailer, a semi-truck, or an 18-wheeler truck is like having a large, dangerous, moving vehicle on the road with no one driving it.

Thomas Wallace, Truck Driver, Was Watching Porn On Laptop Before Killing Julie Stratton In Crash: Police, The Huffington Post, January 27, 2010

Mom of two mowed down by trucker watching porn on laptop: cops, NY Daily News, January 27, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

Distracted Driving, US Department of Transportation

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