Posted On: May 29, 2010

Chicago is Site of Two Leading Truck Bottlenecks in the US

According to the Federal Highway Administration, 3 of the 10 most congested truck corridors in the US are located in Chicago. Ranking number one on the list is the Circle Interchange, which is the downtown junction located between Eisenhower Expressway and the Kennedy and Dan Ryan Expressways. The average speed in this junction is 30 mp but traffic can slow to as low as about 23 mph during rush hour.

The Kennedy Expressway junction with the Edens Expressway, located on Chicago’s North Side, is number two on the list. Average rush hour speed is 23 mph, with an average non-rush hour speed of 39 mph even though the speed limit in this corridor is 55 mph.

Dan Ryan Expressway where it joins up with the Bishop Ford Freeway takes the number 9 spot. Average speed clocked in is about 50 mph during non-rush hours, 47 mph overall all, and 38 mph during busy travel periods.

The I-290 at Interstate Highway 355 in Chicago’s western suburbs is number 67 on the list, while Interstate Highway 80/94, in the Chicago-Northwest Indiana corridor, is listed as the 85th most congested truck bottleneck in the US.

This information, provided by the Federal Highway Administration and American Transportation Research Institute, will hopefully help trucking companies do a better job of figuring out their delivery routes and schedules so that they can avoid having to go through the busiest corridors during their peak hours. However, not only are truck drivers responsible for getting their cargo to its destination in a timely manner but also, he/she must drive to the current driving conditions to avoid causing a Chicago truck accident, which can occur if a large truck follows too closely behind the vehicle in front of it, fails to slow down when traffic starts to back up, or attempts to talk on the cell phone or text while driving.

Unfortunately, there are truck drivers who fail to obey traffic laws or go with the flow of traffic. When this happens, pedestrians and the occupants of other vehicles are the ones that suffer the most.

Chicago has top 2 truck bottlenecks in nation, study finds, Chicago Tribune, May 26, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Federal Highway Administration

American Transportation Research Institute

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Posted On: May 25, 2010

Driver Files Illinois Tractor-Trailer Accident Seeking Over $150,000

Samuel Clines is suing Charles K. Foster III, Curt Foster doing business as Foster Brothers' Salvage and Recycling, and Steven R. Hilton for his Illinois tractor-trailer crash injuries. He is seeking a judgment greater than $150,000 plus costs.

According to Clines’ Illinois truck accident lawsuit, on May 30, 2008 he was in O’Fallon and stopped for traffic on West Highway 50 when he was rear-ended by a tractor-trailer being driven by Hilton. Clines contends that the trucker failed to stop his large truck.

The plaintiff is also accusing Hilton of negligent driving, including following too closely behind the vehicles ahead of him, not keeping a proper lookout, driving too fast, failing to properly control his tractor-trailer, and operating his truck in a manner that caused the traffic collision.

Clines says that he sustained injuries to his neck, back, arms, shoulders, spine, ribs, spinal cord, vertebrae, joints, invertebral discs, bones, and skin, and that he suffered neck pain, headaches, back pain, nausea, swelling, nervousness, inflammation, dizziness, the impairment of his natural functions, and limitation of motion. He claims that some of these injuries continue to remain active. Cline says that as a result of his injuries, not only has he incurred medical bills but also his ability to enjoy life has been diminished.

Illinois Tractor-Trailer Accidents
Negligent truckers and their trucking companies can be held liable for a victim’s personal injuries or the wrongful death of a loved one. Illinois truck crash lawsuits can be tough to win without an experienced 18-wheeler truck accident law firm representing you. The sooner you get legal help the easier it will be for your tractor-trailer crash lawyers to begin pursuing your compensation.

Driver claims tractor-trailer rear-ended him, The Record, May 24, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Trucks and Trucking News, New York Times, May 26, 2010

Truck Safety, AAA

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Posted On: May 22, 2010

Semi-Tractor Trailer Crash on Interstate 80 Claims 24-Year-Old's Life

A 24-year-old woman has died from injuries she sustained during a semi-tractor trailer accident on Interstate 80 early Saturday. Abby Lynn Vermeire was riding in the front seat of a 2006 Ford 500 driven by her fiancé Erik Hayek when their car went under the large truck at around 3:30am.

According to police, the semi’s driver, Hryhoriy Kozachok, was making an illegal U-turn on the interstate’s east and westbound lanes when the collision happened. Fog likely played a role in the large truck crash. Kozachok is charged with making an unsafe turn.

Hayek, 30, was injured in the truck crash, as was a passenger who was riding in the back seat of his car. Kozachok, did not sustain any injuries. Another man, 19-year-old Jacob Harris, rear-ended Hayek’s vehicle right after the truck crash. He was treated at the hospital and then released.

Hayek and Vermeire were going to get married on July 17.

Chicago, Illinois Semi-Tractor Trailer Accident

You do not want to pursue financial recovery from a semi-tractor trailer company without legal help. Many trucking companies are equipped to fight truck accident claims. They may even try to get you to settle before you’ve had a chance to assess the seriousness of your injuries or determine how much your medical and recovery expenses will cost. Some truck accident injuries are so catastrophic that you may no longer be able to work, which can result in significant losses of income and benefits.

I-80 crash dies, Quad-City Times, May 23, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

Truck Safety Coalition

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Posted On: May 20, 2010

Woman Dies in I-59 18-Wheeler Truck Accident

A tractor-trailer accident on Interstate 59 has claimed the life of a 58-year-old woman. Annie Hosey, 58, was driving a 1995 Buick Century when the collision with the 18-wheeler truck occurred.

The two motor vehicles were on the Northbound side of Interstate-59. Police are still trying to determine the cause of the traffic crash. Hosey was pronounced dead at the traffic crash site.

The offers a number of interesting facts about 18-wheeler trucks:
• 80,000 pounds is the legal weight for an 18-wheeler (compare this to the average car, which weighs around 5,000 pounds)
• The average length is 70-80 feet
• Cab length (by wheelbase) is between 245’ to 265’
• It takes longer to stop an 18-wheeler truck (about 40% more time) than it does a regular car

A collision with an 18-wheeler truck will usually result in serious injuries for pedestrians or the occupants of the other vehicle involved. In Will County, DuPage County, Cook County, and Lake County, Illinois, an experiencedChicago truck accident law firm can help you fight for your personal injury recovery.

Common causes of deadly 18-wheeler truck collisions:
• Inadequate driver training
• Overloaded trucks
• Faulty brakes
• Improper maintenance
• Driver fatigue
• Drugged driving
• Drunk driving
• Distracted driving
• Failure to obey traffic signs
• Cell phone use
• Text messaging
• Speeding
• Failure to adjust speed to road and weather conditions
• Poor visibility
• Failure to check for vehicles in blind spot
• Aggressive driving
• Driving more than the number of hours that are legally allowed
• Failure to check cargo and truck to make sure all safety measures are in place

There may be more than one party who should be held liable for your truck crash injuries.

Laurel woman killed in I-59 Wreck, Laurel Leader-Call, May 20, 2010

The Truckers' Report

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Posted On: May 14, 2010

FMCSA’s Pre-Employment Screening Program Will Hopefully Decrease the Number of Chicago Truck Accidents

This week, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration launched its Pre-Employment Screening Program. The PSP lets commercial motor carrier companies electronically access driver accident and inspection records when screening trucker and bus driver candidates.

Up to five years of driver crash data and three years of inspection information will be made available to employers. This will give employees key details for assessing a candidate’s safety risks as a commercial driver.

FMCSA's Motor Carrier Management Information System will populate PSP on a monthly basis. MCMIS data will include state-reported accident findings, enforcement, inspection and compliance review results, and motor carrier census information. Drivers will be given a chance to verify the information made available through PSP, and their records will stay protected under federal privacy laws.

US Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says the launch of PSP sends a message to commercial drivers and carriers that the government mean business when it comes to ensuring that the safest drivers are the ones operating buses and large trucks on US roads. Hopefully the new program will help reduce the number of Chicago truck accidents and bus crashes that occur because of commercial driver negligence.

If a trucking company or bus company failed to keep a driver with a dangerous driving record or one with serious health issues that could impair his/her driving abilities off the road, then serious injuries and deaths can result.

FMCSA Launches Pre-Employment Screening Program, US DOT, FMCSA, May 11, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Pre-Employment Screening Program, USDOT

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

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Posted On: May 12, 2010

18-Wheeler Truck Crash Kills Teen Riding in Stolen SUV

A teenager who was a passenger in a stolen SUV sustained fatal injuries when the vehicle he was riding was involved in a semi-truck accident with an 18-wheeler truck that jackknifed. The fatal truck crash happened on Interstate 30 at around 6am on April 26.

According to police, the trucker lost control of his large truck before crashing into the concrete highway median. The tractor-trailer then fell over and onto the SUV, which was reported stolen that morning.

The driver, age 16, got out of the SUV and tried to leave the 18-wheeler truck accident site. The teenager was apprehended and charged with failure to stop and render aid and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

Two other teens remained trapped in the SUV. Emergency crews rescued them 17-year-old Renee Escalante was transported to the hospital in stable condition Unfortunately, a second passenger in the SUV, 17-year-old Mario Ruiz, was pronounced dead later that day. Semi-truck driver Edwin Manning was taken to the hospital in stable condition. The teen driver sustained minor injuries.

Jacknife Truck Crashes
Common causes of a truck jackknifing can include driver error, improper braking, too much cargo, making sharp turns, equipment malfunction, poor road conditions, and speeding. Jacknifing involves an 18-wheeler truck, a semi-truck, a tractor-trailer, a big rig, or another commercial truck folding into the shape of a pocket folding knife. This can place the large truck at risk of tipping to one side or rolling over while endangering the lives of pedestrians and the occupants of the vehicles around it.

Teen dies from injuries in I-30 wreck involving stolen SUV, 18-wheeler, Star-Telegram, April 26, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Truck Safety Coalition

Large Trucks, 2008 Truck Safety Facts (PDF)

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Posted On: May 7, 2010

Trucker in Tractor-Trailer Accident that Killed 11 People Was Talking on Cell Phone

According to state police, the 45-year-old trucker who caused the deadly semi-truck crash that killed 11 people on March 26 in Kentucky was talking on the cell phone leading up to the collision. The police report also concludes that Kenneth Laymon was driving his large truck at a speed over 70 mph when he lost control of the tractor-trailer and crossed the median to crash head-on into a van carrying Mennonites who were headed to a wedding. Toxicology findings have come up negative.

One witness says that Laymon tried braking 96 feet after going over median. Killed in the tractor-trailer collision were Laymon and van occupants John Esh, his wife Sadie, their daughter Rachel, Anna, and Rose, their son Leroy, his wife Naomi, their grandson Jalen, Rachel’s fiancé Joel, and family friend Ashlie Michelle Kramer.

The NTSB is examining whether vehicle design and operation or highway engineering played roles in causing the truck crash. Meantime, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is investigating Hester. Inc., Laymon’s employer. Last February, the FMCSA gave the company an 88.4 score on a scale of 1 to 100 (the highest number being the worst) for safety. In the 30 months prior to this crash, based on 194 driver inspections conducted by the federal agency, 21 drivers were taken out of service for log book violations and exceeding the 14-hour on duty and 11-hour driving limits.

Distracted Driving Can Cause Deadly Chicago Truck Crashes
Recent studies have shown that talking on the cell phone dramatically increases a driver’s crash risk. With their large-sized vehicles and humongous loads, cell phone using truckers in tractor-trailers can be very dangerous. Cell phone driving is negligent driving and can be grounds for an Illinois truck accident lawsuit if anyone were to get hurt.

Cell phone use cited in crash that killed 11, AP/Google, May 6, 2010

Toxicology negative in I-65 crash that kills 11, Courier-Journal, May 6, 2010

Related Web Resources:
National Transportation Safety Board


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Posted On: May 4, 2010

Illinois Truck Accident Lawsuit: Plaintiff Says He Was Injured After Wheel Came off Back of Semi-Tractor to and Struck His Vehicle

Regis J. Jennings and Sharon Bricker are suing C. Grantham Co. and truck driver Lawrence C. Haas for Jennings’ Illinois truck accident injuries. Jennings, a semi-truck driver, says he was driving his 2001 Freightliner semi- north on Illinois Route 127 in Bond County on April 28, 2008 when a wheel from the semi-tractor that Haas was pulling with his truck came off the vehicle. The wheel then struck Jennings’ tractor-trailer, causing him to sustain serious and permanent injuries.

Jennings says that in addition to causing him to experience pain and suffering and incurred medical expenses, his Illinois semi-tractor injures have prevented him from attending to his daily responsibilities and doing his job to the extent that he was able to do so before. He therefore cannot earn the same amount of money.

Jennings’ wife, Sharon Briker, is claiming loss of her husband’s comfort and care and loss of consortium. She says that she too has incurred medical expenses because of her husband’s injuries.

The plaintiff says that the defendants did not properly inspect the nuts, bolts, wheels, and other wheel fasteners on Haas’ semi-trailer. They also failed to systematically repair, inspect, and maintain the large truck. Jennings claims that considering the wheels’ condition, Haas was traveling at an unsafe speed and that the defendant’s unfitness, inexperience, and incompetence contributed to causing the Illinois truck crash. Jennings claims that Haas was never properly trained on how to drive, inspect, or maintain semi-trailers and semi-trucks.

The couple is seeking over $600,000 plus costs.

Truck driver's inexperience contributed to accident, suit claims, The Record, May 3, 2010

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