The injuries can be catastrophic when a truck is not properly loaded, but how exactly does the way cargo is loaded onto a truck contribute to a truck accident?

Improper Loads Can Cause a Deadly Truck Crash

When a truck is overloaded or the goods on a truck are not evenly distributed, a truck may be more likely to:

  • Spill its goods. When the cargo spills onto the roadway, other drivers are at risk of hitting the items and getting hurt. Additionally, the goods can hit another driver’s vehicle and cause that driver to lose control.
  • Rollover. A truck may rollover when it is improperly loaded, landing on another vehicle or causing nearby vehicles to crash.
  • Have difficulty stopping. Trucks that are not loaded according to cargo securement regulations may have trouble stopping, which can be dangerous if traffic unexpectedly slows down or a person or item enters the roadway.


Of course, other types of accidents can also occur, and you may have the right to recover damages in any accident where the truck, trucking company, or trucker caused your injury.

Contact a Lawyer After Any Kind of Truck Wreck

Whether you were hurt in one of the ways described above or another type of truck accident, it is important for a complete investigation to be conducted to determine what caused the crash and who is legally responsible for your injuries. Are you ready to get started? Contact our office at any time using our live chat or our easy, online contact form.

Three Things Every Brain Injury Victim Needs to Know After a Truck Accident

We cannot tell you, in a blog post, how much money you should be able to recover for your injury, when you will get a legal recovery, and what your future will be like. Those things are unique to each person who has suffered a brain injury in an I-90 truck accident, and we would be happy to talk to you about them individually.

Right Now There Are Three Things We Want to Tell You

If you have suffered a traumatic brain injury in a Chicago Skyway truck accident, you deserve:

  • Medical treatment. This includes not only emergency care, but also ongoing care. You deserve this whether or not you have health insurance and whether or not you have the means to pay for it.
  • To know what happened to you. You should know what caused the accident that resulted in your injury.
  • To understand your legal rights. You deserve to know whether you have the right to pursue a recovery for your injuries.


There should be no exception to these rules.

Want to Know More About Your Specific Case?

It is not enough to get medical treatment, to know what happened to you, and to understand your legal rights. You also need to know more about bringing a possible lawsuit and more about your possible financial recovery. Please contact us today via the live chat button on this page or by phone to learn more.


Category: Truck Accidents



Accidents With HAZMAT Trucks Pose Additional Risks for Victims

The size of a truck plays a part in the severity of a wreck, but what a truck is carrying can have an even bigger impact. Large tanker trucks and 18-wheelers are a regular sight on Illinois roadways, and some of them are marked with colorful, diamond-shaped placards that mean they are carrying potentially dangerous substances that pose a risk to health and safety. When these trucks get involved in accidents, the results can be especially tragic—and it can have a far-reaching impact on drivers, passengers, bystanders, and communities.


HAZMAT is short for “hazardous materials,” and the term is used throughout the transportation industry to describe items or substances that are potentially harmful to people, plants, and animals. According to the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Global Supply Standards, the types of substances classified as hazardous materials include:

  • Toxic substances
  • Cancer-causing substances
  • Irritants and corrosives
  • Combustible items or substances
  • Unstable or explosive materials
  • Chemicals that release dangerous dust or fumes when handled
  • Radioactive materials
  • Anything that is considered a physical or health hazard

Some specific examples of materials that might fall under one of these categories include:

  • Chemicals for commercial uses
  • Gases, whether compressed or liquid
  • Fuels and oils
  • Pest control agents
  • Paint, varnish, and similar items
  • Dyes
  • Cleaning and disinfecting products

Because of the additional threat to public health and safety, trucks that carry hazardous materials are held to higher standards and more regulations than trucks that don’t come with the same kinds of risks. For example, these more stringent regulations require trucks carrying these materials to inform certain authorities and label their trucks appropriately, among many other rules for safe transport. But what are the real risks of these large vehicles and their cargo?

Why Are Accidents With HAZMAT Trucks Potentially More Dangerous?

The Analysis Division of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released a report that showed that:

  • Four percent of large trucks involved in fatal accidents had hazardous material placards, and two percent of the trucks involved in non-fatal accidents had placards.
  • In 15 percent of the placarded trucks involved in accidents, the hazardous materials were released during the incident.
  • In fatal crashes, 48 percent of those releases were flammable liquids, such as fuel. For non-fatal crashes, 56 percent were flammable liquids.

While wrecks involving HAZMAT trucks may not be common, they can be very dangerous and negatively affect many lives. While a collision with an 18-wheeler is already a potentially tragic event, the addition of flammable fuels, possible explosions, and dangerous fumes can add to the injuries and death. In some cases, the hazardous cargo that is released during an accident may not even have an immediate effect on health, but could create risks—such as cancer or lung issues—for victims later in life.

What Causes HAZMAT Accidents?

HAZMAT accidents are caused by the same kinds of issues that cause other accidents, but the addition of hazardous materials can especially be a problem with:

  • Overloaded or improperly loaded trucks
  • Rollover accidents
  • Reckless driving and driver errors
  • Any collision that punctures a tanker truck or causes it to spill its load

Sometimes, there is no way to predict or prevent a serious accident. However, in other cases, accidents happen because a HAZMAT driver ignored the rules of the road or a company chose to overlook one of the numerous safety regulations in place for trucks transporting hazardous materials. The companies that use trucking fleets to move potentially dangerous materials from place to place have a duty to the public and the people they share the road with to make safety a priority. When they fail to do so, and a HAZMAT truck spills its load over an already serious accident scene, the victims of the accident may be able to launch a claim for financial compensation.

How Can I Get Help If I’ve Been Hurt in an Accident With a Vehicle Carrying Hazardous Materials?

Just like in any accident with a large truck, the trucking company often has the advantage over uninformed victims. While trucking companies may have experience defending themselves against claims from victims, victims don’t generally have experience holding trucking companies responsible for severe and disabling injuries.

If you have been involved in an accident with a tanker truck that spilled hazardous cargo, you have a limited time to get informed about your rights and how to protect them. Before you sign any documents or give a statement to the insurance company, consider talking directly with an attorney who is familiar with the laws and regulations involved. The team at Lane Brown has extensive experience helping seriously injured people across the state of Illinois recover compensation from large companies and transportation services after an accident. For more information and a free case review, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 312-332-1400.

How Much Financial Compensation Is Available to Families After a Catastrophic Accident With an 18-Wheeler?

In a minor accident with a negligent driver, calculating the financial compensation you need for what happened to you might be as simple as looking at the total cost of your medical treatment and days off work. However, when someone is catastrophically injured or killed by a commercial truck, calculating the worth of a claim becomes much more difficult. In many cases, families are left trying to put a price tag on a life-altering injury or the permanent loss of a loved one’s support—and that task can seem impossible. This is why the best way to get answers about the worth of a serious injury claim is to talk to a personal injury attorney who has hands-on experience with truck accident victims and their families.

Understanding How Catastrophic Tractor-Trailer Accident Claims Are Valued

There is no sure-fire “formula” for calculating what your claim is worth, and there are no guarantees that your family will receive what you truly deserve for what happened in the wreck. However, by taking a look at the details and specifics with a highly experienced attorney, you can get a better idea of the kinds of financial compensation available to you and what it might take to fight for it from the trucking company’s insurance company. These kinds of claims are generally valued by adding up:

  • Past and current medical expenses
  • Predicted future medical expenses
  • Past, current, and future mental health care
  • Lost wages and loss of future earning capacity
  • Emotional damages, pain, and suffering
  • Other losses directly related to a loved one’s injuries or death

A dollar amount may be clear for some expenses related to an accident, but putting a value on the experience and impact of a tragedy isn’t as clear. If a loved one died because of the accident or has been left permanently disabled, the course of your family’s future has changed—and the law recognizes this by allowing financial damages for the loss of the victim’s support, future earnings, companionship, and parenting. While compensation for emotional and future consequences of a catastrophic truck wreck may figure into your claim, you will need to understand how to support your claim and succeed. Unfortunately, the nature of the process does not make this easy on families.

How the Nature of the Insurance Industry Can Take Away From the Victims of Commercial Truck Accidents

Insurance companies and the companies that own and operate large trucks are prepared to defend against claims from victims, even when those victims have legitimate injuries caused by negligence. Most companies that have trucks on the road or handle truck insurance claims also have teams of attorneys and adjusters ready to respond to an accident and minimize the potential financial losses for their employers. Victims sometimes have to go through seemingly extreme measures—working with attorneys, economic experts, medical experts, and others—in order to “prove” that they deserve compensation for what happened and determine how much that should be in practical terms.

Although these companies are not specifically attempting to further victimize the victims of accidents, the nature of this process means that families have to be very careful about:

  • What they say
  • What they sign
  • What they accept or agree to

Even steps that seem minor can have a big impact on the final worth of your claim, so it’s important to get informed. If you’re unsure how to work with the insurance company, or if you or a loved one suffered extremely serious injuries in the accident, don’t make guesses about your claim. Contact an attorney of your own choosing as soon as possible, and start booking up on your rights and options for moving forward.

Getting Help Understanding How Much Your Family’s Injury Claim for a Truck Accident Might Be Worth

If you need answers and an honest evaluation of your family’s claim, contact our law office directly at 312-332-1400. Our attorneys have focused experience helping the victims of catastrophic accidents, and we offer a completely free and confidential case review for Illinois residents who have questions about their legal rights to compensation. This review will help you understand what your claim might be worth, what to expect from the legal process, what your rights really are, and how to protect yourself. Don’t wait any longer—real help and support are only a phone call away.

Three Crucial Steps for the Victims of Car Accidents Involving FedEx or UPS Trucks

FedEx and UPS handle millions of packages each day around the world; that workload translates into a constant bustle of their freight and delivery trucks on the road. Whether you’re on the highway or driving in town, it’s not unusual to see these package delivery vehicles everywhere you go. However, with so many trucks, vans, and drivers on the road, there are always risks for serious accidents. Here are some things you should know if you or a family member has recently been hit.

Get Medical Attention, Then Follow These Three Easy Steps

While the very first step should always be seeking medical attention for your injuries, there are some concerns even after you’re on the road to recovery. Huge international shipping companies like FedEx and UPS are experienced in defending against victims’ claims of injury in accidents with their trucks. As a result, victims can be starting from a disadvantage. But it doesn’t necessarily have to stay that way.

In order to protect your rights even before you understand them, you should carefully consider taking the following three steps:

  • Don’t give a recorded statement. You may be asked to give a statement over the phone or on video about the accident in which you were hurt. However, these kinds of recorded or formal statements may not be necessary. The package company may be interested in getting a statement before you fully understand your rights in hopes of collecting information that can be used to minimize any potential injury claim you file.
  • Don’t accept any money or sign any documents for the accident. It is possible that the package company or its insurance company will attempt to offer you compensation for your medical bills or ask you to sign documents shortly after you get hurt. However, if you don’t really understand what kind of care you might need or what your case is worth, you should wait to consider these options until you’ve spoken with an experienced attorney of your own choosing.
  • Do contact an experienced attorney for help. Unlike regular car accidents, wrecks that involve vehicles from a major corporation can quickly become overwhelming. If you are feeling confused or pressured to make decisions about your potential claim, it is extremely important that you at least take the time to speak with an attorney who has helped people in similar situations succeed with their cases.

Although they may seem fairly simple, these three steps can go a long way toward preserving your rights until you can get the information you need about a UPS or FedEx accident.

For more information about protecting yourself after a serious truck accident, request your free copy of our book, The 8 Steps to Follow After Your Illinois Car Accident, or contact our legal team directly at 312-332-1400.

Victims May Have Trouble Holding Delivery Drivers and Their Employers Responsible for Serious Accidents

When you’re hit by another driver, you know that you need to exchange insurance information and file a claim for compensation if you’ve been hurt or had to go to the hospital. But what happens when the driver who hits you is driving a delivery van or carrying supplies to and from a place of business?

The injuries you sustained or what you went through may not have been any different had you been struck by a private car or truck rather than a business-owned vehicle. Yet being in an accident with a commercial delivery driver can actually be a lot more legally complicated than an accident with the driver of a personal vehicle.

Companies and Their Delivery Drivers Have a Duty to Keep Other Drivers Reasonably Safe on the Road

Chicago roadways are home to delivery trucks and vans of all kinds and sizes, including:

  • Trucks delivering commercial supplies and parts
  • Grocery and food delivery
  • Package delivery, such as FedEx or UPS

When companies use delivery drivers as a part of doing business, or when people are employed as commercial drivers, they have certain responsibilities to keep the public safe. When they break the rules of the road or ignore safety regulations and cause a serious wreck, the victims of that wreck may be able to file a lawsuit and recover the costs of their medical bills, time away from work, and even pain and suffering associated with their injuries.

However, understanding who is responsible and how to protect your rights in this situation isn’t easy. The businesses and insurance companies that deal with the liability for delivery vehicles are usually prepared to minimize how much they must pay for accidents. They know accidents can and do happen when they have a lot of vehicles on the road, so they employ teams of attorneys, insurance adjusters, and others who are trained in minimizing potential claims to protect the company’s bottom line.

The Type of Business, Driver, or Vehicle Could Have an Impact on Accident Victims’ Injury Claims

There are some unique challenges for victims when they are hurt by a commercial driver who isn’t a classic “trucker” or who operates a smaller kind of commercial van or truck. Depending on the type of vehicle, the company the driver works for, and other specific details, there can be big differences in how the insurance requirements and legal responsibility work when someone gets hurt. It may be unclear if a victim’s claim will go through the company’s insurance coverage or the individual driver’s coverage, and there may be limits on how much a victim can recover.

Get Help With Your Questions Today

Do you need answers about a wreck in the Chicago area that left you seriously injured? Don’t hesitate to call our law office at 312-332-1400 for immediate support and a free case review. Our legal team has extensive experience helping the victims of major traffic accidents, and we can help connect you with the resources you need to protect your rights to compensation.

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