Pedestrians and Cyclists Hit by Trucks
Due to the sheer size and weight of large commercial trucks, pedestrians and cyclists hit by trucks can suffer devastating and even deadly consequences. If you are a pedestrian or bicyclist who has been hit by a truck, you may be able to seek financial compensation for your injuries. The skilled Wheaton and Schaumburg truck accident attorneys at Therman Law Offices have extensive experience in Illinois personal injury law. We understand that every case is unique, which is why we will tailor our representation to your unique situation. If we serve as your legal counsel, you can rest assured that we will advocate for your rights every step of the way.Causes of Truck Accidents Involving Pedestrian and Cyclists
Drivers of large trucks sometimes have a hard time seeing smaller vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians on the road. This is especially true on highways, where trucks often have large blind spots which can be the cause of many accidents. Other common causes of truck accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists include, but are not limited to:
- The truck driver dozing off behind the wheel;
- The truck driver excessively speeding;
- The truck driver driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs;
- The truck driver using a cell phone while driving;
- The truck driver following others on the road too closely.
Pedestrians and cyclists hit by trucks may potentially be able to recover compensation from two sources. The victim can sue the driver of the truck that struck them, and may also be able to sue the trucking company that employs the truck driver if there is an employment relationship.
The legal theory that is used to establish fault in the vast majority of truck accident cases is negligence, and an experienced accident attorney can determine whether it applies in your case. Negligence occurs when a person fails to use the degree of care and caution that a reasonably competent person in the same situation would have used, thereby causing an accident and resulting injury. Since the state of Illinois places the burden of proof on the plaintiff, you will have to establish negligence by demonstrating the following: i) the truck driver owed you a duty of care; ii) the truck driver breached the duty of care; and iii) the truck driver’s breach was a direct and proximate cause of the pedestrian or cyclist accident; iv) and the pedestrian or cyclist suffered bodily harm or property damage as a result.
Both state and federal law heavily regulate various aspects of the commercial trucking industry in an effort to minimize the risk of accidents on the road. A truck driver or trucking company’s violation of a safety statute can be evidence of negligence in your case. For example, under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration rules, truck drivers carrying property may not drive more than 11 hours at a time after 10 consecutive hours off. If a truck driver fails to comply with these hours of service regulations and the trucking company encouraged that violation or failed to take action to stop that violation, both the truck driver and trucking company may be liable.Obtaining Compensation for Your Injuries
Pedestrians and cyclists hit by trucks are likely to suffer extremely severe injuries such as broken bones, brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, burns, or neck injuries. These injuries can be extremely costly to treat, and can have lifetime effects necessitating continual care. Fortunately, Illinois law allows plaintiffs to recover compensation for a variety of damages from the at-fault party. Common examples of damages in a truck accident case include medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and compensation for any other losses arising from the accident.Meet With a Skilled Truck Accident Attorney Serving Wheaton and Schaumburg
If you or a loved one has been hit by a truck while walking or cycling, a seasoned Wheaton and Schaumburg accident lawyer can help. At Therman Law Offices, we understand how harrowing it can be to experience such an accident, which is why we will handle your case with the utmost compassion. We represent clients from areas including Wheaton, Schaumburg, Arlington Heights, Mt. Prospect, Hoffman Estates, Elgin, Bartlett, Streamwood, Hanover Park, Bensenville, Wood Dale, Bloomingdale, and Roselle. For a free consultation about your case, call us today at 312-588-1900 or contact us online.