Illinois residents who look forward to taking road trips need to be aware that there are higher risks of getting into car accidents when they are traveling. It is important for travelers to understand the factors that contribute to the heightened risk of accidents so they can take preventative steps to minimize their chances of accident involvement while they are on the road. A car accident lawyer may help victims of car accidents that were caused by the negligence of others while they are traveling.
There are several factors that contribute to the increased risk of car accident involvement while traveling by automobile. Drivers who are unaccustomed to driving for long distances may become fatigued and doze off behind the wheel which could cause a crash. They might also be driving on unfamiliar roads and get distracted by maps or passengers. Some road conditions such as uneven pavement or poor lighting may contribute to motor vehicle crashes. Tight curves, hidden driveways and unprotected edges of the road around cliffs may also lead to accidents.
Travelers can take steps to prevent car accidents both before they travel and while they are on the road. They should make certain to check that their tires have good tread and sufficient air pressure. Since travel laws and rules vary from state to state, it is also important for travelers to check the laws and rules of the areas through which they intend to travel. If travelers will be renting a car, they should do so through a reputable company and read through all of the fine print in the rental contracts.
While travelers are on road trips, it is important for them to follow all of the rules of the road. If they feel tired, drivers should pull off the road and get some rest rather than trying to push forward. If they can, travelers should stop for the night and not drive after dark. Drivers and all passengers should use their seatbelts at all times while they are traveling, and drivers should avoid distracting activities while they drive. A car accident lawyer may help if an auto accident happens despite the driver taking cautionary steps to prevent it.
Carbon monoxide poisoning is one of the leading causes of fatal accidents while boating in Illinois and the U.S. Because this gas is odor-free and colorless, victims may not realize that they are being poisoned while they are inhaling it. Carbon monoxide is a byproduct that is produced by gas-powered engines, including boat engines. If boats are not maintained or vented properly, the gas can enter the cabins and seriously injure or kill the victims who are on the boats.
People are unable to see or smell carbon monoxide, and they may breathe too much of it in without realizing it. This may cause them to become very ill or to die. The most common source of carbon monoxide is a running gas-powered engine. On larger boats, there may be rear-venting generators that also can produce carbon monoxide. When they are vented in this way, the carbon monoxide gas may envelop swim decks and other areas of the boat, posing substantial hazards for people on board. Engines that have not been properly maintained may also leak carbon monoxide into cabins and other enclosed areas on boats.
To reduce the risk of carbon monoxide exposure while boating, boat owners should avoid using rear-venting generators on board that vent towards swimming decks. Carbon monoxide can build up in the airspace beneath the boat’s stern, killing someone in a few seconds. Boat owners should also make certain that they adhere to their regular maintenance schedules and keep their boats’ engines in good working order. Cabins and other enclosed areas on boats should have good ventilation systems installed. When boats travel at slow speeds or idle, carbon monoxide quickly builds up in cabins, on decks, in cockpits or on bridges. When boats are not loaded properly, the backdraft may also cause carbon monoxide levels to build. Boat owners should be sure to load their boats properly, vent them correctly and make certain that there are systems that circulate plenty of fresh air to protect themselves, their families and their guests.
Carbon monoxide poisoning can kill people suddenly and with little warning. Because of the way in which it affects people, they may become disoriented. When a guest on a boat is sickened or killed by carbon monoxide, a personal injury attorney may help the victim or family to recover damages.
In Illinois, the law limits who can file wrongful death lawsuits to certain categories of people holding different relationships with the decedents. It is important for family members to understand who can file a lawsuit when their loved ones have died as the result of someone else’s negligent or wrongful acts. If lawsuits are filed by the wrong plaintiffs, the correct ones must substitute into the lawsuits in order for them to proceed. If a rightful plaintiff does not substitute himself or herself in the lawsuit, the claim may be dismissed. Wrongful death lawyers may help families to determine who the rightful plaintiffs are before filing the lawsuits in order to avoid potential problems.
In Illinois, only the personal representative of the decedent’s estate is allowed to file a wrongful death claim. The personal representative is allowed to be the spouse of the deceased person, a deceased minor’s parent, an adult child of the deceased person or another next of kin. If a personal representative was not named by the deceased victim in a will, then the court may appoint someone to serve as the personal representative of the estate. It is that person’s responsibility to manage the estate and to also file the wrongful death claim. If another family member files a lawsuit, the personal representative must step into the case or it may be dismissed. If the personal representative fails to file a wrongful death claim within the statute of limitations, the ability to recover damages for the decedent’s death may be permanently barred.
Wrongful death lawsuits must be filed no later than one year after the victim’s death or according to the statute of limitations for the underlying claim. If the incident that happened involved a personal injury claim, the statute of limitations could be up to two years from the injury date. Because the underlying statute of limitations begins to run from the date of the injury, it is possible for the claim period to run out before the person succumbs. In this case, the personal representatives may not be able to file claims if the decedent lived for a few years before succumbing but never filed a personal injury lawsuit. Wrongful death lawyers advise families to file claims as soon as possible to avoid statutes of limitations problems so that their abilities to recover damages will remain.
In February, President Donald Trump’s Administration announced an executive order that would require all federal agencies to reevaluate their regulations for potential revisions or elimination. Here are some of the DOT rules that agencies may change due to this expected reduction of regulation.
There are two regulations that could be removed under this executive order: Safety fitness and speed limiters.
The safety fitness rule was to be responsible for determining if carriers were unsuitable for an operation of commercial trucks based on investigations regarding compliance and safety data gathered on the road. Those rules are currently in stasis and Congress has requested a National Academy of Sciences study on the effectiveness of the current scoring system.
The proposed speed limiter rule to issue speed limiting devices for use in Class 7 and 8 trucks is likely not going to go through under Trump. The rule has a lot of opposition among trucking industry groups that believe speed limiters might result in more accidents and traffic congestion.
The hours of service rule and the driver training rule will probably remain in place under the Trump Administration.
In 2016, Congress eliminated the 34-hour restart hours of service rule, which was deemed unnecessary and is unlikely to reappear anytime soon. The driver training rule issued in June of 2017, which required 30 hours of training for new drivers, has not yet been addressed by the Trump Administration.
There are two rules that are likely to come to fruition in the near future: the ELD mandate and the driver drug testing rule.
The controversial ELD mandate would make it necessary for trucks to use electronic logging devices by December 18, 2017. This rule has received a lot of opposition from trucking groups but is still expected to move forward.
The driver drug testing rule requiring hair samples in drug testing for truckers was approved by Congress in 2015 and is still in place, as it’s expected to be a better testing method than urine testing.
While these are some predicted changes in trucking under Trump, his administration may make unexpected changes throughout his presidency. Regulations currently in place are designed to reduce risky driving that results in trucking accidents. Victims of trucking accidents can always consult with a truck accident lawyer to determine if they have a case.