Posted On: December 22, 2010

Preventing Chicago Truck Accidents: FMCSA Launches Compliance Safety Accountability Program to Target High Risk Truckers

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is launching the Compliance Safety Accountability (CSA) program. In an effort to improve road safety, and decrease the number of bus and truck collisions, bus and truck companies considered to be “high risk” will be targeted.

CSA’s Safety Measurement System (SMS) will analyze all safety-based violations and crash and inspections data to determine the road performance of a commercial motor carrier. SMS employs BASICs, which includes seven safety improvement categories, to examine a carrier’s crash risk and on-road performance. The categories include:

• Fatigued Driving (Hours-of-Service)
• Unsafe Driving
• Controlled Substances/Alcohol
• Driver Fitness
• Cargo-Related: Unsafe handling of hazardous materials or spilled, dropped, or shifting cargo.
• Crash Indicator: Refers to crash history, including severity and frequency
• Vehicle Maintenance

The old federal measurement system only examined four broad categories.

FMCSA believes that under this new program, officials will be more easily able to determine which carriers exhibit high-risk behavior and provide them with this data so that they can change unsafe practices ssooner rather than later. Interventions might include targeted roadside inspection, early warning letters, and concentrated compliance reviews. When a carrier does not take the proper corrective steps, FMCSA will impose civil penalties.

The CSA program will also attempt to give the public safety data in a format that is more user-friendly. The program has been tested in nine US states.

Our Chicago truck crash law firm welcomes the federal government's efforts to improve commercial truck and bus safety. We know how upsetting it can be to lose someone in an Illinois tractor-trailer crash that could have been avoided were it not for the carelessness or negligence of another party.

U.S. Safety Plan Targets High Risk Truckers, Claims Journal, December 15, 2010

Compliance, Safety, Accountability, FMCSA

Related Web Resource:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

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Posted On: December 16, 2010

$3.5 Million Truck Accident Verdict Awarded in Case Against Illinois-Based Company

A jury has awarded James Fairley $3.5 million for his truck accident injuries that he sustained in 2008. Fairley, 56, has said that he sustained a traumatic brain injury, fractured two vertebrae, and suffered from depression as a result of the crash.

The truck accident happened on August 4, 2008 when his van was struck by a tractor-trailer owned by Schiber Truck Co., which is located in Illinois. The trucker, who was unable to stop to avoid rear-ending the van, swerved onto the shoulder of the road. Unfortunately, the truck’s trailer swung into the rear of the van, shoving it into traffic. The van was then struck by another semitrailer.

Fairley says he must now walk with a cane and that he is unable to bowl, dance, or read. He also suffers from memory problems and has a hard time focusing.

The semi-truck crash verdict awards Fairley $1.5 million for present and past damages and $1.5 million for future damages. His wife Kimberly Fairley was awarded $389,000 for present and past damages. Her award for future damages is $120,000.

In other truck collision news, a woman Injured in an Illinois truck crash is suing truck driver Allison Farr and Potenza Enterprizes Inc. for personal injury. Jodi Renee Sprehe says that she was struck by the Freightliner truck that Farr was operating on Interstate 55 on May 5.

Sprehe is seeking over $50,000 plus costs on both counts. She is accusing the trucker of failing to keep a proper look out or control the vehicle and of careless driving. Sprehe says that she sustained soft tissues injuries, became disabled, experienced pain and mental anguish, and lost income.

Jury awards couple $3.5 million for pain and suffering from crash; amount may be biggest auto verdict in state this year,, December 15, 2010

Woman injured in crash with Canadian truck, The Record, December 9, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

Fatality Analysis Reporting System

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Posted On: December 6, 2010

Semi-Truck Crash Critically Injured Two School Bus Students While At Least 17 Others Receive Medical Treatment

Two young children sustained critical injuries on Friday when the school bus they were riding in collided with a tractor-trailer crash. The large truck crash involved a bus that that the town mayor was driving.

At least 19 children were treated medically following the semi-truck crash. One of the children, a middle school student, was placed in a medically induced coma.

Gil Savoy, the mayor of Port Barre, is a substitute school bus driver. He had pulled over on the side of the road and was slowly moving the bus forward when the vehicle was rear-ended by an 18-wheel truck. Debris came off the truck when the collision occurred.

Savoy and trucker David Cox sustained minor injuries during the large truck accident. An investigation is taking place to determine what happened.

Also today, two people died from massive blunt trauma when a semi-truck hit their passenger vehicle on I-65. The names of the truck crash victims are Jeannie S. Miroballi, 46, and John Miroballi, 68. Police say that the 2004 Chevrolet they were riding was headed north when it left the roadway for a reason that is not yet known and entered the southbound lanes where it was struck by a semi-truck. A second-semi then struck the passenger car. The Miroballis were pronounced dead at the accident scene.

Chicago Truck Accidents
Accidents involving 18-wheeler trucks, semi-truck, tractor-trailers, and other large trucks can be catastrophic for the other parties involved. It is important that you consult with an experienced Chicago truck crash lawyer. Just recently, in Illinois, 22-year-old Nicholas Wells and 20-year-old Jeffrey Denninger were killed when the vehicle they were riding was struck by a Peterbilt semi-truck.

There may be more than one party who should be held liable for your truck crash injuries. Even if criminal charges are not filed against the responsible driver, there could still be grounds for filing an Illinois personal injury lawsuit in civil court.

2 southern Ill. men killed in crash, KFVS12, November 23, 2010

At least 2 Louisiana students critically hurt when truck hits bus, CNN, December 3, 2010

Two die today when auto is struck by semi truck on I65, Chester Tribune, December 3, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

Large Trucks, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

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Posted On: December 3, 2010

Tractor-Trailer Accident Lawsuit Says FMCSA Violation by Trucker Contributed to Man’s Wrongful Death

The family of Mark Kerper is suing semi-tractor trailer driver John Bahl for wrongful death. Kerper, 55, died in a tractor-trailer accident on July 17 after the trailer that had come unhitched from Bahl’s large truck hit the car he was in. Kerper’s family is also suing Russell Bahl, the semi-tractor trailer owner. for damages.

In their semi-truck crash complaint, the Kerper family is accusing Bahl of negligent operation, failure to inspect the connection between the tractor and the trailer, failure to make sure that the two were securely attached, violation of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations, operation of defective equipment, and other violations. They are seeking damages for mental anguish, suffering, loss of income and earnings, loss of Mark’s future earnings, and burial expenses.

The defendants are denying that they were negligent. They have, however, admitted liability for the damages.

This is not the first deadly truck accident that Bahl, 73, has been involved in. Per an accident report, another man died and a woman was injured when a backhoe slid off a flatbed trailer he was operating in September 2003. He pleaded guilty to safety violations and paid fines over $500.

Tractor-Trailer Violations
With their heavy loads that they may be hauling, tractor-trailer drivers cannot afford to violate safety regulations. They must make sure that cargo is properly secure, the truck is properly maintained, and that their trailer or anything else that they may be hauling is correctly secured. Truck overloading is not allowed. Also, trucking companies are responsible for making sure that their truckers do all aspects of their job safely.

Unfortunately, every year there are people who are killed and injured in Illinois truck crashes because there are truck drivers who were negligent. When this happens it is often other people who end up paying the price.

Second fatal crash spawning lawsuit,, December 1, 2010

Rules and Regulations, FMCSA

Related Web Resources:
Truck Safety, AAA Exchange

Truck Safety, Public Citizen

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