According to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) , the state had 22,008 truck accidents in 2019, with 22 of these crashes being fatal and 18 of them with a tractor-trailer. A Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)  study states that 141,000 trucks were involved in accidents in the US.
These statistics show that trucks can be a danger on public roadways, especially when tractor-trailers are involved. One of the most dangerous practices that include tractor-trailers is making a u-turn, which often leads to u-turn accidents.
Our truck accident lawyers have seen the devastating effects a u-turn truck accident can have on our victims and their families. Let’s assist you in receiving fair and full compensation for your emotional and physical trauma.
If you have suffered an injury, loss, or damages due to a truck accident caused by negligence, the personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, the legal advocates for truck accident victims will advise you regarding:
- Your legal rights
- Identifying who is liable for your damages
- How you can receive maximum compensation for your injury
Call our truck accident lawyers at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today for immediate legal advice and schedule a free consultation.
What Makes Truck U-Turns Dangerous?
U-turns not only put the driver at risk of injury and death but also put the lives of everyone else on the road at risk.
The combined length of a large semi-truck is usually in the range of 70 – 80 feet, and the general width of Interstate highways is about 12 feet. An 80 feet trailer truck turning around, performing such a life-threatening maneuver in 12 feet of space, creates the following risks:
- Limited visibility: During any u-turn maneuver, the driver is in a position where he cannot see what is happening around his truck. He will either be unable to see both sides of his truck or any obstacle/vehicles in the front of or behind the tractor-trailer.
If u-turns are made at intersections, the traffic signals will also be obscured from his view, and he will be unable to determine what the other motorists in traffic at the intersection are doing.
- Difficulty in moving the truck: Public roads don’t have enough space for trailer trucks to execute a u-turn safely, especially in rural areas and city streets. In this scenario, an attempt to make a u-turn can lead to disaster.
- Blocked lanes: Making a u-turn can often mean that a trailer blocks several lanes to execute this dangerous maneuver. Usually, up to four lanes are used to make a u-turn making this a dangerous maneuver.
- Inadequate lighting or high visibility markings on the truck: When a u-turn is attempted at night or where the lighting is not optimal, without high visibility markings or lighting on the trailer truck itself, other traffic will not see the truck in the middle of the road and have time to avoid a collision.
- Illegal u-turn: Any time you violate the traffic law, you are putting lives in danger. Illinois traffic law  is very clear regarding illegal u-turns, as seen in Illinois Vehicle Code (625 ILCS 5/11-802)  – Limitations on U-turns.
- Drivers are not allowed to turn and move in the opposite direction until they have made sure that their actions are safe and will not interfere with other road users
- Drivers are not allowed to turn and move in the opposite direction at a curve when nearing or approaching the crest of a grade where the vehicle cannot be seen by drivers coming from any other direction within 500 feet
Injuries That Can Be Sustained in a U-Turn Truck Accident
When making u-turns, the very last thing on the mind of a truck driver with a tractor-trailer is causing serious injuries, but the reality is that the other drivers often pay a heavy price, as can be seen by this list of injuries:
- Burns from hot metal, road rash, and exposure to toxic chemicals
- Bruising and contusions
- Crushed bones and fractures
- Dismemberment and amputation
- Internal bleeding
- Internal organ damage
- Lacerations and cuts
- Neck or back injury
- Significant head trauma
- Tissue injury
- Injury to the spinal cord
- Torso or rib injury
- Tetraplegia, quadriplegia, and paraplegia (complete or partial paralysis)
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Wrongful death
Proving Trucker Negligence in a U-Turn Accident Case
Many trucking companies have made it a company policy to ban their truck drivers from making a u-turn as truck drivers causing a u-turn accident are almost always at fault. However, the burden to prove who is responsible remains on the u-turn truck accident victim to determine that the driver was at fault. The following points can assist in proving your case:
- Gather as much evidence at the accident scene as you can. Take photographs of the truck and each passenger vehicle in the crash, skid marks on the road, and other property that might have been damaged. Remember to take photographs of each injury you may have sustained.
- Write down a detailed statement of what happened in the u-turn truck accident as you remember them. Try to remember each car, any of the other drivers, how the car was hit, your attempt to prevent the accident (if there was time), and if you remember any traffic laws that were violated.
- Get all the contact information of the truck driver that made the u-turn accident, the other drivers involved, and all witnesses – their names, physical addresses, home telephone numbers, and email addresses.
- Get a copy of the police report and any other relevant reports, such as an insurance company or forensic specialist.
- Keep all your medical and rehabilitation bills for each injury sustained.
Why Choose Rosenfeld U-Turn Truck Accident Lawyers?
- Rosenfeld Injury law firm has successfully prosecuted cases involving semi-trucks across Illinois and the Midwest, recovering millions of dollars in settlements in commercial vehicle collisions for our clients.
- Our law offices are well-versed in the Federal Safety Regulations that apply to companies involved in u-turns and have achieved successful settlements for cases just like yours, demonstrating that the violation of these regulations contributed to the crash.
- We have years of experience in assisting individuals and families to navigate the legal system so that you can focus on recovering from the physical and emotional trauma incurred by your trucking accident.
- Our services allow each client 24/7 access to our dedicated Chicago trucking accident attorneys, who are committed to communicating with you throughout your legal proceedings.
- We have access to the foremost truck crash experts
- Our law offices are headquartered in downtown Chicago, Illinois, and our truck accident attorneys know the area well.
Examples of Truck Accident Settlements Won by Rosenfeld Truck Accident Attorneys
Our truck accident lawyers have worked on various complex commercial truck matters and have won. Here are a few examples of cases won in the following localities –
- $1,400,000: Rear-end truck accident resulting in plaintiff needing back surgery. The lawsuit was filed in Cook County, IL.
- $1,250,000: A commercial truck driver was hit by a large truck. Plaintiff had herniated discs in his back and underwent two surgeries. Both truck drivers and their trucking companies agreed to a negotiated settlement resolved in DuPage County.
- $1,100,000: A couple was injured while riding in the passenger seat of their friend’s vehicle when it was hit by a large truck. Both clients had spinal injuries and needed surgery. A lawsuit was filed in Cook County and involved other vehicles.
- $1,025,000: A young woman was injured when she made a left turn in her car in front of an 18-wheeler on Cicero Avenue between Fullerton and Damen Avenues. The victim filed suit against the trucker and his trucking company.
- $750,000: Loading dock accident involving a trucker crushed by a forklift. The lawsuit was filed in Kane County.
- $750,000: Sideswipe collision on the highway involving a national trucking company involved in a collision on a highway in Chicago, IL.
- $720,000: 47-year-old man who suffered a herniated disc in his back from a tractor-trailer accident. Settlement at mediation in Winnebago County.
- $616,772: Settlement for four friends in a car injured by a large truck going through a red light at an intersection in Aurora, IL, at high speed that hit them.
- $500,000: A garbage truck accident settlement for clients hit by the garbage truck following an Illinois State Trooper crash on I-55 in Rock Island County resulted in a negotiated settlement. This crash was one of two truck accidents happening on the freeway within one mile.
These are cases where the driver broke the law, evidence was gathered, and a fair settlement was awarded.
How Does a Driver Prevent a U-Turn Accident?
The danger of u-turns in truck accidents can not be underestimated. Leading by example, many trucking companies in the US do not permit their drivers to make u-turns or severely restrict the surrounding circumstances when making a u-turn.
When making u-turns, you can minimize the risk.
- By using the exit at the off-ramp of the next interchange and re-entering the highway by the on-ramp heading in the other direction
- By making use of large, empty parking lots to facilitate making u-turns safely
- At all times, ensure the safety of pedestrians and each other car on the road when making a u-turn
Allowances for U-Turns
The easiest way would be for a truck driver not to execute a u-turn at all, but there are times when u-turns are necessary. An example of this would be when a law enforcement officer requests the driver to execute a u-turn:
- Due to a collision
- Due to an obstruction blocking the road further along
- Due to a low hanging overpass
- Due to a natural disaster
It is in the best interests of trucking companies to ensure that their semi-trucks are not risking u-turn truck accidents, as they can be held liable for damages.
A trucking company must also ensure that its drivers know how to execute u-turns safely and within the scope of all the relevant laws, with no risk to other vehicles on the road.
Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit After Losing a Loved One in a U-Turn Truck Accident
Surviving family members who lost a loved one in a horrific U-turn truck accident can file a lawsuit, citing wrongful death against one or multiple parties for damages. Qualifying family members could include the surviving spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents, siblings, etc.
If the decedent never named a legal representative, the court will appoint one. Once a legal representative is in place, they will be the primary contact for the attorneys representing the family and the estate.
The first step in filing any type of lawsuit is to consult with an attorney who has experience handling similar cases. If you want to file a wrongful death lawsuit, you’ll need an attorney specializing in this area.
With an attorney’s help, the surviving family member can expect compensation to include:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Lost wages and future lost earnings
- Loss of consortium and companionship
- Hospital costs and medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages (in some cases)
An experienced wrongful death attorney will know how to collect evidence and build a strong case to prove the at-fault party’s negligence. Did you lose a loved one in a U-turn truck accident? Contact an experienced attorney today to discuss your legal options.
Hire a U-Turn Truck Accident Attorney to Resolve Your Compensation Claim
Were you injured or suffered property loss in a u-turn truck accident? Contact our Chicago car accident lawyer as soon as possible, and allow them to protect your rights and get the compensation you deserve. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our law firm remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC accepts all personal injury claims and wrongful death lawsuits on a contingency fee agreement. This arrangement ensures our clients have legal representation immediately without paying any upfront costs.
Our “No-Win/No-Fee” Guarantee is simple: We do not get paid if you do not win! Our law firm advances all expenses included in resolving a truck accident claim and only gets paid when negotiating a settlement or winning a jury trial award. Call us at (888) 424-5757 for a free case consultation.