Marion, IL — October 10, 2017, Wayne Maxwell was killed as the result of an accident where his vehicle was rear-ended by an 18-wheeler.

Illinois State Police reported that the fatal incident happened Tuesday morning near the intersection of I-57 and Highway 148.

Preliminary reports indicate that 57-year-old Maxwell slowed to a near stop on the northbound interstate due to construction. As he did so, a tractor-trailer reportedly failed to slow down in time and crashed into the back of the line of traffic.

Maxwell’s vehicle was the first hit, and he was killed in the collision. It’s unclear if anyone else sustained injury.

Police issued a citation to the truck driver for failure to reduce speed. No additional details are currently available.

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Commentary

It’s almost unfathomable that nearly every week for the last 27 years, I read about at least one fatal accident caused by a tractor-trailer rear-ending traffic. Most people will read these accidents–especially seeing one where a truck driver is cited–and think the victims and their families will have no problem getting justice for their injuries. In reality, trucking companies will always fight to avoid liability after an accident, no matter how clearly the facts seem stacked against them.

But how exactly can a trucking company avoid liability when reports seem to put them at fault? The most common strategy they use is shifting blame to anything and anyone besides their driver. They could say that the driver in front of them hit their brakes too suddenly; they could say the construction crew routed traffic improperly; they often claim the truck experienced sudden, unpredictable brake failure. Whatever they can think of to minimize their own fault.

Most people probably think these sound like flimsy excuses which couldn’t possibly be effective. If the trucking company is up against an experienced attorney, they likely won’t; but trucking companies are counting on catching victims and their families off-guard. Quite frankly, most personal injury lawyers will see only one, maybe two big commercial vehicle accidents over their whole careers. An inexperienced attorney might see a fact pattern like this and think the case is open-and-shut. Weeks, maybe months go by, and all the sudden they realize they don’t have the right evidence to counter these trucking companies’ blame-shifting strategies. By the time that happens, the case has already been irreparably damaged.

Now I don’t want all of this to sound alarmist or like holding trucking companies accountable after an accident is impossible. Like I said, trucking companies are counting on going up against someone who isn’t prepared to deal with them. Victims and families who seek out an experienced professional as soon as possible can help ensure they have the necessary evidence to prevent trucking companies from tipping the scales in their favor. Getting justice after a serious truck accident is well within reach, but it takes the right tools and the right allies.

–Grossman Law Offices

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Recent Comments to the Blog

Jason is back to work and is now playing Sled Hockey and wheelchair rugby!! Jason is the strongest and most amazing man! He may nly have 1/2 a leg, but that is ALL he is lacking!! Thanks to prayer and GOD and awsome first responders and Baylor doctors. Jason's wife, Sheila
— Sheila
I'm a former employee. I had brought up this exact scenario and suggested a maintenance procedure that would eliminate the possibility of this type injury. Obviously my warning went unheeded.
— Tophat
I was actually a couple cars back from this wreck, one of the first on the scene, and helped administer CPR on the victims. The truck driver was going way too fast, but it was actually his trailer that swung around and hit the suv, the semi-truck ended in the median.
— Leif Burton
I appreciate how you've commentated on this tragedy--informative, with questions, but not hurtful. I live within 30 mins of this crash site, and I am appalled at the entire situation :(. I can't even begin to understand what could have happened to make this come to fruition, but I will be keeping up with it so I can learn what investigations bring to light about how something awful like this could happen. Rest in peace, Thomas, Carolyn and Carolyn...
— Summer
I am Anthony Siffords daughter. im 13 and i miss my dad i just wanted everyone to know that he is in a better place now and i would to thank everyone for the support. i miss my dad but it was amazing to see how many people had been toughed by my dad god bless thanks for everything...
— Hannah Sifford
I am Rodney Palmer's sister-inlaw. I am amazed and grateful for all the heartfelt wishes and support for our family... It is difficult indeed to put our thoughts into words, but we very much appreciate your kind and helpful words at a time when these things mean so much. Losing someone as special as Rodney has been tough, but knowing the he has touched so many people's lives keeps my sister's strengthens our family.
— Maureen
A lot of people say smack about lawyers, but I want to say that I'm glad there is a way that people who are wronged by corporate neglect can get justice and force change. We are living in a world where corporations and govt care less than ever about common people, and I support your work. I hope I will never need your services.
— Martin Onasis
My friend Michael was the one who got hit by this train. This is the ONLY article I can find on it!! How is that possible? It happened almost 5 days ago! Thank you for actually caring about us "no name" people. I hope when more information comes in you will post it as soon as you can. Thank you again!! God bless you
— Leslie
Tony was the step Grant father and it's been hard for the whole family but we know he is in a better place now. It's nice to know that people are rasing awareness with my grandfathers story. Thanks, family and friends of Tony Wray.
— Mercedes Stanley
Thank you for posting these accident articles on your site. At the company that I work for, e deal with monitoring construction activity and work around trenches and all sorts of construction equipment/vehicles. I sometimes wonder if construction companies have enough safety training to inform employees of how to protect themselves while on the job.
— Erik Hofmann
I'd like to thank you for giving my cousin's death some type of recognition and letting our family know he is not a lost cause. Thank you <3
— Victoria

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