Mathys & Schneid Announces Multimillion-Dollar Settlement for the Family of Two Children Killed In Truck Crash on I-57

February 4, 2015

(Naperville, Illinois) Mark T. Schneid and Mark W. Mathys of the Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid recently obtained a $2 million settlement recovery for the wrongful deaths of two children (ages 5 and 8) who were ejected and killed during a truck crash.

The Facts of the Case

The case involved a collision between two tractor-trailers in Effingham, Illinois, on Nov. 3, 2013. The firm's clients, the parents of the children who were killed in the crash, were in a semi truck with their family, transporting cargo to the Chicago area on Interstate 57. They were driving at 62 mph when the driver of the other truck, who had pulled over to the shoulder of the road, pulled back onto I-57 right in front of them at approximately 30 to 40 mph. This vast difference in speed led to extensive damage; the entire side of the truck moving at the higher speed was sheared off, and two of the family's three children were thrown from the truck and died.

Expert Witness Findings: Vital to the Outcome

The Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid filed a lawsuit on behalf of the family, alleging that the driver of the other truck was in violation of the limits on drive time imposed by the federal Hours of Service Regulations. The firm's accident reconstruction expert downloaded data from the other driver's electronic control module (ECM, sometimes called the "black box") that showed the driver had been on the road as many as four hours beyond the federally mandated limit of 11 hours.

The work of this expert also confirmed that the firm's clients had been traveling at 62 mph. This confirmation cast doubt on the statement of the other driver, who claimed that he also had been traveling at 62 mph. He could not have been, based on the ECM data and the damage that resulted from the crash.

During the case, the firm also had to counter assertions the state police made about the firm's clients. Although the state police allowed the other driver to take his truck away without downloading the ECM data and they were unable to download data from the ECM on the clients' truck, the state police blamed the parents of the young children for the crash. The ECM data that called the other driver's statements about speed into question also allowed the firm to effectively question the conclusions presented by the state police.

A Lengthy Process Reaches Its Conclusion

After a year of litigation in federal court and many contentious depositions, the case settled for $2 million.


The Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid in Naperville, Illinois, represents clients in a wide range of personal injury and wrongful death cases and has obtained multimillion-dollar settlements and verdicts on behalf of its clients. For more information, visit www.mathyslaw.com or call 630-848-9294.