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Determining what happened, who is to blame after a truck crash

Millions of commercial trucks operate on the U.S., and many of them travel in and through Chicago on a regular basis. As such, most drivers share the road with these massive, powerful vehicles quite frequently. Typically, this happens without incident, and drivers have little reason to worry about the trucks around them.

However, that can all change in the event of a crash. In these situations, it can become vital that injured motorists figure out details about the trucker, the truck and the cargo in order to determine what caused the truck accident and who may be liable.

Where to look for answers

After any truck accident, people are often left with few -- if any -- answers as to what or who caused the crash. To find the answers, interested parties should examine: 

  • A trucker's credentials 
  • A trucker's logbook, to determine how long he or she was on the road
  • Video footage from any cameras that may have recorded the event
  • Witness statements
  • Police reports
  • Cellphone records, to determine if any drivers were on or using their phone at the time of the accident
  • Tests that reveal a driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Physical evidence, including skid marks, points of contact and types of injuries
  • Road signs, including route restrictions and speed limits
  • Cargo spills
  • Maintenance records

Why these details matter

This information could show that a trucker was distracted, impaired or drowsy and was not safe to drive. It could also show that a truck was improperly maintained or loaded, which may have led to loss of control. In some cases, there could be evidence that a trucker was violating traffic laws or otherwise reckless.

In cases involving a negligent trucker or trucking company, there could be grounds for a personal injury claim. These claims allow injured victims and their families to pursue compensation for the damage caused by negligence, which can be catastrophic when an enormous truck is involved in a collision.

If you have questions about pursuing a legal claim after a truck accident, it can be wise to consult an attorney who can help investigate the crash and build a legal claim.

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