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Chicago Wrongful Death Law Blog

Fatal truck accident claims man's life

Trucks are an integral part of everyday life in Cook County. A tractor trailer is a common sight on the highways. With the massive size of these vehicles, however, any mishap can result in a fatal truck accident. One of the most common occurrences wrongful death attorneys encounter is a fatal commercial truck accident with other vehicles on the road or with pedestrians.

Recently, a 61-year-old truck driver carting coal was killed when a tire from a truck with a box trailer came loose and hit his vehicle. The man's truck caught fire. He drove off the road, crashed into a tree and was declared dead at the site of the accident. Upon investigation, law enforcement found that the 42-year-old driver of the truck that lost the tire had committed several violations including driving with an expired commercial driver's license, failing to secure a new CDL and operating his vehicle with loose fasteners.

Death in construction accident spurs family to file lawsuit

Chicago is a constantly changing city and with those changes comes plenty of construction work whether it's for new buildings, refurbishing of old ones or repairing infrastructure. With all that activity, it's not uncommon for there to be a construction accident. In the worst case scenario, this can result in a fatal construction accident. Wrongful death attorneys frequently see cases from families seeking answers following a fatal work-related accident, many of which have to do with construction.

Recently, an 18-year-old man working on a highway construction crew was killed when a piece of a steel bridge was dropped on him by the operator of a crane. The new bridge is being built and this accident happened while workers were on the temporary bridge. The family of the man has decided to file a wrongful death lawsuit due to this fatal construction accident.

Patient dies after nursing home staff fails to perform CPR

When a family places an elderly relative into a nursing home in Cook County, the intention is for them to be cared for by medical professionals and a competent nursing home staff. Sometimes, however, the care is lacking and nursing home negligence leads to injuries or death of the elderly person. Wrongful death attorneys often see cases in which a family is seeking compensation for injuries or death suffered by their relatives due to errors or negligent behavior in a nursing home.

A nursing home resident died when the nursing home staff did not perform resuscitation when the patient became ill and unresponsive. When the patient was admitted, it was stipulated that efforts at resuscitation were to be made in the event of an occurrence such as this. Three nurses checked on the patient, but failed to perform CPR.

Contractor puts people at risk for asbestos-related illness

People in Chicago who were exposed to asbestos are at risk for asbestos-related illness. These can include asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma. Frequently, wrongful death attorneys encounter people who have either become ill due to exposure to asbestos or have lost a loved one due to the substance. The diseases linked to asbestos are almost always fatal and people who were subject to exposure were often entirely unaware that they were in danger.

A contractor who accepted a job to remove asbestos from homes, schools and a daycare center did not have the proper licensing to remove the substance. As a result, he released dangerous asbestos-related substances into the air. The man worked on 21 homes and 13 schools in one town and 12 homes in other areas. He is now in trouble with the law. Removing dangerous substances is a criminal act and the man faces seven years in prison. He will also be required to pay restitution.

Despite drop in bed rail use, elderly still at risk

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, during the past several decades approximately 500 people have died as a result of hospital bed rails. While the average Chicagoan may not be familiar with bed rails, nurses, nursing home residents and wrongful death attorneys often know just what they are.

In nursing home facilities throughout the country, it used to be common for some residents' beds to feature rails along the sides. These rails could prevent individuals from falling out of bed, so they were thought to increase safety. However, unfortunately these same safety features posed a safety risk to some residents. Those who are small in stature or impaired can become stuck in the rails and even experience oxygen deprivation.

Illinois man electrocuted in work-related accident

Workplace accidents can take many forms, whether the nature of the work involves being outdoors or indoors. In the Chicago area, there are countless construction sites, manufacturing facilities and transportation hubs that are common settings for job site accidents. Recently in Pekin, Illinois, a fatal work-related accident took place near a utility pole and resulted in a 35-year-old man's death.

The worker was employed by an independent contractor, an Edwardsville electric company, which another company had contracted for work on utility poles. During the morning hours, a live electrical current came in contact with the worker. He was taken to a local emergency room but died shortly after his arrival.

Multiple employers blamed for man's lung cancer death

The widow of a man who worked for several different employers, in several different capacities, is suing those employers in an Illinois court for his asbestos-related illness and subsequent death. The woman is suing both as an individual and as the administrator of the deceased man's estate.

In a case centering on a work-related death due to asbestos exposure, it is not unusual for multiple entities to be named as defendants. In this case, over 24 different companies are being sued. The woman alleges that her husband obtained lung cancer as the result of asbestos exposure. The exposure, the suit claims, stemmed from his work as a laborer and electrician. The man had also served in the military.

Chicago teen charged after hitting and killing pedestrian

It's been a particularly brutal winter so far, and car accidents have piled-up almost as fast as the snow throughout Chicagoland this year. Last month, a fatal car accident took a 44-year-old pedestrian's life on South Ewing Avenue. Now, a teenage girl has been charged with leaving the scene and not notifying police of the incident.

On the afternoon of Jan. 25, the 16-year-old girl was allegedly behind the wheel of a car that struck a pedestrian. According to police, two juveniles witnessed the accident, which initially appeared to have been a hit-and-run. Authorities spoke with the South Side girl in early February at her home. Her vehicle had damage to its front end and after speaking with her mother, the mother told police that the girl was the person responsible for the accident.

Good samaritans help driver in final hours after Antioch crash

In a contest between a van and a pickup truck, nobody wins. At least, that's how tragedy usually unfolds in a head-on collision between vehicles in the Chicagoland area. On one recent Sunday morning in Antioch, a van and truck crashed into each other and left a ripple effect of injuries and death.

The incident occurred on Highway 173, when a westbound van and a truck traveling east somehow ran into each other. The truck experienced a rollover and its 45-year-old driver was killed, but not before good samaritans attempted to help as best they could. A woman who had been driving behind the truck, as well as another driver near the scene, stopped to help after the fatal car accident. The woman noted that she held the crash victim's hand and spoke with him; she also tried to monitor his pulse. In an email, the woman noted she wanted the man's family to know he did not pass away alone.

20 out of 25 OSHA violations "serious" for Palatine employer

Following citations it received in 2010 and 2012, a Palatine company has again found itself on the receiving end of citations from the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. After an inspection that took place in August of 2013, OSHA fined the suburban Chicago plating company with 25 violations, 20 of which were deemed serious.

The inspection took place through a special program that highlights employers with illness and injury rates that are higher than average. Earlier this month, OSHA noted that the violations against the Palatine facility were also repeat, and included exposed electrical box openings and lack of guards for certain machines. These types of hazards may not sound overly serious to a layperson, but to those who encounter these hazards regularly, the threat they pose may be a familiar one.

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