The Most Vulnerable in Truck Accidents in Illinois

 Posted on March 20,2024 in Auto Accidents

Kane County truck accident lawyerLarge trucks pose significant risks to everyone they share the road with due to the sheer size and weight disparity between these vehicles and vulnerable road users. Most semi-trucks are more than 70 feet long and weigh over 80,000 pounds. They are especially dangerous to pedestrians and bicyclists, often resulting in devastating consequences. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, in 2021,15 percent of the almost 5,000 people killed in truck accidents were pedestrians and cyclists. If you or a loved one have been injured in a crash, an Illinois personal injury lawyer can explain your legal options.

Why Are Pedestrians and Cyclists More Vulnerable?

One of the most glaring aspects of large truck accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists is the disproportionate severity of injuries they sustain. The sheer mass and momentum of a commercial truck can cause catastrophic harm upon impact, resulting in severe trauma, multiple fractures, traumatic brain injuries, and spinal cord damage. Pedestrians and cyclists lack the protective enclosures that other vehicles have, rendering them particularly susceptible to the devastating forces unleashed in collisions with large trucks.

Another dangerous factor in truck accidents for vulnerable road users is that the design and configuration of commercial trucks can exacerbate these risks. Blind spots, also known as “no-zones,” significantly hinder the truck driver’s visibility of nearby pedestrians and cyclists, increasing the likelihood of crashes, especially during turns or lane changes.

The extended stopping distances required for large trucks also pose a daunting challenge for avoiding accidents, particularly in urban areas with high pedestrian and bicycle traffic.

Injuries Suffered by Vulnerable Road Users in Truck Accidents

Truck accidents involving cyclists and pedestrians can result in a wide range of injuries. The severity and type of injuries sustained often depend on various factors, such as the speed of the truck, the point of impact, and the protective measures taken by the cyclist or pedestrian.

Some of the most common types of injuries our attorneys see in the truck accident cases we handle include:

  • Brain injuries – Brain injuries are one of the most prevalent injuries in truck accidents. These injuries can range from concussions to more severe injuries such as intracranial hemorrhages or traumatic brain contusions. These injuries can lead to long-term cognitive impairment, memory loss, other neurological deficits, or death.
  • Spinal cord injuries – The force of impact in truck accidents can result in damage to the spinal cord, leaving the individual with partial or complete paralysis. A spinal cord injury can lead to permanent disabilities, affecting sensation, mobility, and bodily functions below the site of injury.
  • Internal injuries – Another potentially fatal injury that a pedestrian or cyclist can suffer in a truck accident is an internal injury. The powerful force of impact from the crash can cause organ damage, internal bleeding, or ruptured organs. Symptoms of these injuries are often not immediately apparent but can lead to life-threatening complications if left untreated.
  • Fractures and orthopedic injuries – Cyclists and pedestrians may suffer fractures to the extremities, including the arms, legs, ribs, and pelvis, due to the impact of the truck or the subsequent fall. These fractures can range from minor to severe and may require surgery – often multiple operations – for treatment and rehabilitation. Many people are left with chronic or permanent disabilities.

Contact a Kane County, IL Truck Accident Lawyer for a Free Case Evaluation

If you have suffered injuries in a truck accident, you may be entitled to damages that include medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, permanent disability, and more. If your family was killed in the accident, you may be able to pursue a wrongful death claim for financial justice for the death of your loved ones.

Call Kinnally Flaherty Krentz Loran Hodge & Masur P.C. at 630-907-0909 to schedule a free consultation with one of our dedicated Aurora, IL truck accident attorneys and find out what legal recourse you may have. Se habla español.

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