Drivers of 18-wheelers are required to undergo additional training before they are allowed to get behind the wheel of a big rig in Illinois. That’s because truck drivers have to be extra careful on the state’s roadways because their vehicles are so large. The drivers have to be aware of vehicles in front of them, behind them, and on either side of them so that they don’t create trucking accidents. Oh, and they should also avoid hitting vehicles that are disabled on the side of the road.
Apparently, that didn’t happen in Grundy County this week. On Tuesday afternoon just before 3:45pm, a tractor-trailer was traveling on the eastbound side of Interstate 80 heading toward Morris. When the 18-wheeler was about four miles northwest of Seneca, it slammed into a pickup truck that was on the right shoulder of the interstate near Nettle Creek Road. Morris Fire Department officials had to extricate the two occupants of the pickup. A man was transported by ambulance to a Morris Hospital, while a woman was airlifted to a hospital in Downers Grove with more serious injuries. The driver of the 18-wheeler was not hurt.
The trucking accident is still under investigation, but all evidence points to the truck driver being held solely responsible for the crash and the injuries to the two people. Should they choose to do so, they could each file personal injury lawsuits not only against the truck driver, but also against the company that employs the trucker (since Illinois law states that all employers are responsible for the actions of their employees while on the job). The legal action could allow the plaintiffs to collect reimbursement for medical expenses (such as ambulance charges, treatment costs, and physical therapy sessions), compensation for any unearned wages due to missed work, and possible even monetary damages for pain and suffering.