Truck accidents are among the most dangerous types of personal injury scenarios, as trucks tend to have greater mass than other vehicles and the impact force in a collision is significant. This is reflected in the statistics. According to a 2017 study conducted by the Illinois Department of Transportation, 21,055 injury crashes and 436 fatal crashes were linked to large trucks (and similar vehicles), accounting for roughly 16.7 percent of total injury crashes and approximately 27 percent of total fatal accidents, despite constituting just 16 percent of the total registered motor vehicles in the state of Illinois.
Here at Parker & Parker, we provide skilled representation to those who have been harmed in truck accidents. Contact us today to discuss the possibility of litigation, and to learn more about how you can secure compensation for your injuries.
Negligence-Related Factors Leading to Truck Accidents
To successfully bring a truck accident claim, you’ll have the show that the defendant either committed negligence or engaged in intentional misconduct. A variety of negligence-related factors contribute to truck accidents, including, but not limited to:
- Driver intoxication
- Driver fatigue
- Improper cargo loading (leading to a rollover)
- Inadequate maintenance
- Distracted driving
- And more
Potential Employer Liability
As the injured plaintiff in a truck accident case, you might be feeling somewhat concerned about the defendant driver’s ability to cover all your losses. Perhaps the defendant lacks adequate insurance coverage or has minimal personal assets.
What can you do?
Well, you may be able to sue the driver’s employer. The driver’s employer is likely to have significant insurance coverage and assets, so those “deep pockets” make for a better target in personal injury litigation. Whether you can bring an action against the employer will depend on the applicability of two different legal theories.
In Illinois, employers can be held liable for the negligence of their employees, including truck driver employees. Importantly, however, you — the plaintiff — must be able to show that the employee actually committed negligence (reckless and intentional misconduct does not qualify for the application of vicarious liability) and that this negligence occurred within the course and scope of their employment.
For example, if a truck driver injures you while heading home in their personal vehicle (after clocking-out from work), then that is likely not “within the course and scope of employment.”
Employers can also be held liable for their own negligent acts. Employer negligence in the truck accident context may include the improper scheduling drivers in a way that gives them minimal rest time (leading to driver fatigue), or negligently hiring truck drivers who have a history of alcoholism, or who have a poor driving record.
Contact Parker & Parker for Immediate Legal Assistance
Injured in a truck accident? Illinois law may give you a right of action to sue and recover damages.
Here at Parker & Parker, our team of experienced Peoria truck accident attorneys is standing by to provide the legal assistance necessary to evaluate the underlying case, develop and execute a winning litigation strategy and secure maximum compensation. Unlike many of our competitors, we believe that client-centered advocacy is the key to effective litigation — by establishing a collaborative partnership with the injured client, we gain valuable insight into their case.