A recent semi truck accident in the Chicago metro area left the truck driver dead and one other person being taken to the hospital with injuries.
The truck was traveling eastbound on Interstate 94 near Chicago when it apparently lost one of its wheels. Not surprisingly, the truck driver could no longer control the vehicle, and the truck struck the median. The truck then crossed into oncoming traffic, hitting two vehicles. Although one of the drivers of the other vehicles declined medical assistance, the other was taken to a nearby hospital. The truck driver himself was thrown from his vehicle and died at the scene of the accident.
If anything, this tragic case illustrates that truck accidents are not always caused by a negligent driver who is, for example, speeding or trying to use his cell phone and drive at the same time. Sometimes, the truck itself breaks down in a significant way and immediately becomes a hazard on the road, as was the case here.
In such cases, occupants of other vehicles who are injured can still seek to recover compensation. The trucking company has an ongoing duty to make sure its trucks are safe and in good repair. Federal trucking regulations require regular inspections of tractor-trailers operating in interstate commerce. If a condition that endangers safety is found, the truck must be taken out of service until the condition is remedied. A review of the maintenance records of a truck that was involved in a serious accident may turn up evidence of negligent maintenance or violation of federal safety requirements.
Source: Chicago Tribune, “1 dead, 1 injured in crash after semi loses wheel on Tri-State,’ Frank S. Abderholden, Dec. 23, 2016.