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Peoria Personal Injury Law Blog

Knowing how truck accidents happen is essential for your safety

As a driver, you should expect to find yourself in close proximity to many types of vehicles. For example, commercial trucks are everywhere, both on Illinois highways and city streets.

It's important to know the leading causes of  truck accidents, as this information can help you avoid a serious accident.

The link between birth injuries and defective drugs

Giving birth to a child who suffered from birth injuries can be a difficult experience, as it can be something that has repercussions for the rest of the child's life. While some birth injuries can be a consequence of unavoidable complications during delivery, many scenarios can be traced back to medical errors, negligence or defective drugs.

If you have a child who suffered a birth injury due to complications during delivery, you may want to investigate the cause and take action against the liable parties. If you believe that defective drugs were potentially responsible for your child's birth injuries, it is important that you take the time to understand where the law stands.

New devices could keep drivers safe from distractions

Among the many distractions that can afflict drivers in Illinois, smartphones are the most prevalent. However, there are apps and devices that can help keep drivers from getting distracted. AT&T, Sprint and Verizon, for example, offer free apps that silence incoming calls and messages and send automatic replies to callers and senders saying that the recipient is driving. They also prevent the driver from texting although not all block them from social media.

Two devices have been developed recently that do much more. The first, the product of a Colorado-based company, is called Groove and is currently undergoing two pilot programs, one in the U.S. and one in Australia. This device is plugged into the car, just below the steering wheel, and links the phone to a cloud platform. The phone provider blocks all incoming and outgoing communications. Groove will not disable features like navigation or music streaming unless it is customized. Parents of teen drivers may find this useful.

The most common truck accident injuries

Truck accidents often result in fatalities, especially when smaller passenger vehicles are involved. Even when the consequences aren't fatal, they often leave victims with serious, long-term physical and mental conditions to cope with. Residents of Illinois may be interested in the most common types of truck accident injuries.

Spinal cord injuries are a frequent outcome of accident trauma. The vertebrae can become crushed, compressed or even dislodged when the impact is great. Furthermore, the nerve damage could lead to temporary or permanent paralysis. This could mean overwhelming medical bills and lifelong treatment. Injuries to other parts of the body, such as the legs, arms and hips, may also require multiple surgeries. Cuts, lacerations and puncture wounds are common as well.

Take these steps after you're hurt to support your claim

Negligence can happen almost any time, and when it does, it often puts people in danger. For example, a work site where construction teams are negligent could result in falling objects that hit passing pedestrians. Drivers who eat behind the wheel may look away from the road and collide with the tail end of another vehicle.

Negligence isn't intentional, but it is something that has to be addressed after an injury happens. Those who suffer injuries have a right to pursue a claim to obtain compensation to cover their medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering as a result of the negligent act and subsequent accident.

FMCSA report: fatal truck crashes went up 3 percent in 2016

One of the duties of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is to address unsafe trends in the commercial trucking industry. While trends in the previous year cannot yet be accurately recorded, the trends in 2016 can. These statistics may help Illinois motorists understand where the biggest traffic dangers lie.

Among the most important findings of the 2016 Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts is that the number of fatal truck accidents in the U.S. went up by 3 percent. While there were 4,317 fatalities in 2016, there were 4,094 deaths related to large trucks in 2015. Of the 2016 fatalities, 772 were large-truck occupants; this number also was up from last year's 665.

Illinois man killed in chain-reaction accident

A 45-year-old Illinois man is facing serious criminal charges after being involved in a fatal accident in Will County on the afternoon of May 14. The Peotone resident is accused of failing to reduce speed to prevent an accident, not securing a child in a proper restraint system and driving with a revoked driver's license. Police say that a 29-year-old Glenwood man lost his life when his Ford sedan was struck from behind by a Cadillac SUV driven by the man.

According to an Illinois State Police report, the man was proceeding northbound on Interstate 57 in slow moving traffic when his SUV struck the sedan near West Monee Manhattan Road at approximately 3:40 p.m. Police say that the force of the impact propelled the sedan into the rear of a gas tanker. Responding emergency medical services workers pronounced the sedan's driver dead at the scene. The 43-year-old man behind the wheel of the tractor-trailer escaped the crash unharmed according to reports.

4 tips to get your landlord to make those safety repairs

Your landlord refuses to make repairs, and you're sick of it. You're also worried. Some of the issues create serious safety hazards in your apartment or rented home.

For instance, one of your railings on the stairs has come loose, and you worry about it giving way every time you go up or down the staircase. Outside, the exterior lighting has burned out on those stairs, and no one ever replaced the bulbs, so you can barely see when you get home after dark. In the kitchen, you can tell that some of the wiring is not up to code, and you constantly check the batteries in your smoke alarm because you live in fear of a fire. At the same time, your smoke alarm looks very old and you're not even sure if it's up to code anymore.

Study finds seat belts reduce severity of liver injuries

Illinois drivers and passengers can lessen the severity of crash-related liver injuries by wearing a seat belt, according to a new study. The study was published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Researchers studied data from the National Trauma Data Bank in order to identify 51,202 people who sustained a liver injury in a car accident between 2010 and 2015. All the victims were at least 18 years old, and they either were admitted to the hospital or passed away while undergoing emergency treatment. The study found that 15 percent of the victims suffered severe liver injuries. Of that group, 15 percent died. The remaining victims suffered mild or moderate liver injuries, and only 8 percent of them died. People who were wearing seat belts reduced their risk of a severe liver injury by 21 percent. Individuals who wore their seat belts and were protected by airbags reduced their risk of a severe liver injury by 26 percent. However, airbags alone did not seem to reduce the risk of someone incurring a liver injury.

Rideshare drivers at high risk for fatigue behind the wheel

According to a position statement from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, drowsy driving is an inherent risk in the rideshare industry. As drivers in Illinois are aware, fatigue behind the wheel is already a widespread risk, but they may be wondering what the reasons are for this trend among rideshare drivers. There are several.

First is that rideshare drivers work during extended periods of wakefulness. Their sleepiness can sometimes be aggravated by conditions like obstructive sleep apnea, but since most of these drivers are independent contractors, they are not screened for such conditions. Low fares and lack of salary incentives may also push drivers to keep working even when they are drowsy. Many work late at night as well.

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