Q: What's the real cause of my Illinois semi truck accident?
Although it may sound strange, do not ever think that your semi truck accident was your fault, or at least that it was not mostly your fault. There is almost always something that happened long before your collision that played a major part in why you were involved in a semi truck accident. Whether you were side swiped, T-boned, or sometimes even if you were the one that rear ended a semi truck—there was a lot going on behind the scenes in the trucking industry that led up to your being injured.
Besides the obvious accidents caused by a semi truck’s speeding, tailgating, wide turns, or sudden lane changes, the following are some of the real reasons why semi truck accidents happen:
1. Driver fatigue. Both federal and state laws regulate the number of hours a driver can drive in a given day and week.
2. Driver distraction. Accidents caused by cell phone or other electronic devices are increasing.
3. Driver use of drugs or alcohol. Some drivers turn to illegal (and legal) drugs to get a boost to stay awake. Trucking companies are required to make a mandatory substance abuse screening when each driver is hired. Truck drivers are also required to do regular screenings to monitor for substance abuse.
4. Improper loading, overloading, or securing the load. Weight shifting is a common cause to semi trucks not being able to stop in time or holding their driving lanes.
5. Improper inspection and maintenance of trucks. Rigorous inspection and maintenance of the tractor and trailer is required legally and should be performed by the driver at every stop.
6. Equipment failure of the semi truck, such as brakes. Semi trucks are particularly dangerous when driven at a high rate of speed given their size and the longer breaking period to stop.
7. Bad weather. If conditions are hazardous enough federal regulations prohibit semi trucks from even being on the road.
8. Failure to verify the truck driver’s credentials and driving history before hiring.
9. Faulty road design and maintenance. Every state transportation agency has very specific rules to follow when setting up construction and work zones.
To get more information after you or a family member has been hurt in an accident in Illinois, fill out the form on this website and get your FREE "Illinois Guide Book to Auto Accidents and Injuries" and the "Illinois Guide Book to Semi Truck Accidents." Or better yet, for more direct answers call the Giacoletto Law Firm at 618-346-8841 or toll free at 888-346-8841 to speak today with an experienced Madison or St. Clair County accident attorney centrally located in Collinsville.