Size and weight discrepancy.
The size and weight of a large truck against that of a passenger vehicle often results in extensive damage to property, and serious injury to individuals. When a truck’s heavy weight and length compromise maneuverability and braking distances, it can lead to crash, jackknife and rollover accidents involving multiple vehicles. Cargo is an important safety consideration for trucking companies because if it is not loaded securely, it can further compromise a truck driver’s ability to maintain control of a big rig. If an accident is caused by poorly, or overloaded cargo, multiple parties besides the truck driver may be held responsible for damages from the accident. Contact an experienced truck accident attorney for guidance.
Overloading cargo is when a truck is carrying more than the specific maximum weight designed for the truck. A trucking company may do this to avoid making more than one trip that would cost more road time and fuel. An overloaded truck can cause an accident because:
- the added weight requires longer stopping distances.
- tires may not be able to support the extra weight and cause blowout situations.
- mechanical components may not be able to bear the weight increasing downhill speeds and decreasing uphill speed of a truck, and most importantly a shift in cargo weight could cause an overturn or jackknife situation.
Illinois is an“at-fault” state for vehicle accidents and bases total damage awards on comparative negligence, allowing an injured party to have some degree of fault in their accident and still recover reduced awards. When a suing party is found more than 51% responsible for an accident, the lawsuit will be settled in favor of the defense. Insurance and legal settlements will be based on information obtained by the victims, witnesses and professionals who arrive at the scene. Multiple factors will assist in the determination of fault.
An accident victim may receive both compensatory damages, which are those damages that caused economic loss and non-economic loss to victim; and punitive damages can be awarded in certain situations to punish the person(s) being sued, if gross negligence caused extensive damage or death, or criminal acts while driving, such as DUI.
Documentation to support a claim for damages may include:
- Visual evidence
- Witness testimony
- Police reports
- Medical bills
- Verifiable proof of lost wages, or lost job
- Estimates of property damage to vehicle
Hire an attorney.
When an individual suffers harm after a truck accident in Marion Illinois, contact a professional truck accident attorney for assistance to effectively navigate a legal claim for damages. They are experienced with trucking industry regulations, insurance laws and civil procedure that may lead to one, or multiple parties sharing fault for an accident.