To say the highway is a dangerous place is an understatement considering one recent day some 40 miles southwest of Chicago. In the space of just a few minutes and barely 3 miles apart, two accidents involving semi-trailers killed five people.
The first crash occurred around 2:30 p.m. near Channahon when a semi-trailer made an abrupt lane change into several vehicles stopped for construction. Four people were killed, including an 11-year-old girl and three women ages 43, 48 and 54. In the second accident moments later and 3 miles away on U.S. Highway 6, two semi-trailers collided, killing one of the drivers. All those killed were area residents.
A 51-year-old truck driver from Indiana faces criminal charges for the first crash. The Illinois State Police report that the driver was speeding when his truck veered into the path of the stopped vehicles. The force of the truck accident crushed two cars and one van. The truck driver was cited for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, entering false information into his driver's log and keeping a false log book. Details of the second accident are not known.
The driver in the first accident is alleged to have been driving recklessly before the collision. If the driver had stopped in time, no one would have been killed. The charges against him indicate that he failed to exercise due care. The families of the victims can seek legal action against the driver and his employer.
In a claim against the driver, the trucking company may attempt to limit compensation to the victims' families. For this reason, the families should be sure to use the services of a legal professional who can take evidence from the crash, including criminal charges against the driver, to recover the maximum compensation allowable under the law.
Source: Nydailynews.com, "11-year-old girl, four others killed in two separate truck wrecks on Illinois interstate," Meg Wagner, July 22, 2014